Human Agony – Putrescence Of Calvary (2019)

Putrescence of Calvary is unabashed Blasphemy worship channeled through the likes of Pseudogod, but eclipses both by virtue of tighter songs than the first and less knuckle-dragging than the latter. As the video below of the band’s life performance illustrates, this is a severely restricted form of music, utilizing only about one-third of the guitar neck and the lower octaves exclusively at that. Fortunately, the band appear to be under no pretense to the contrary and treat war metal as the more flavored variant of grindcore that it first and foremost is, with songs never outstaying their welcome and played with maximum intensity. Perceptions suitably adjusted in this manner, it then becomes possible to appreciate the skill and conviction with which Human Agony build on top of crude foundations. Rapidly strummed power chords constitute the bulk of song movement here, but the limited musical space over which they operate means that the band has to depend on subtle inflections of rhythm and phrasing for variety. The laudable attempt is to guide this cacophony through a series of bludgeoning textures in every song and not become lost in the kind of stasis that plagues kin like Revenge; ever so often Human Agony seem on the verge of embarking on something a little more expansive, but such is the nature of their genre that even the most tentative threads of morbid a-melody are arrested before they reach their full expression. This is as should be for now, making this album the most visceral in the style, but it also renders any direct sequel surplus to requirement.

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