Review: “All Flesh Is Grass” by God Eater

We were fortunate enough to witness the debut live performance from Glaswegian Technical Death Metal quintet God Eater. For most bands such an event would take place in a dive bar as a support act in front of a handful of drunks but somehow these gentlemen managed to achieve the unthinkable. They made their debut at Tech-Fest 2017 in front of a far bigger audience. Vocalist Josh Graham with Guitarists Ross Beagan and Andrew Macdonald stand alongside Bassist Will Keogh and Drummer Tim Coulson having released their debut full length “All Flesh Is Grass” in September 2019, the culmination of 2 years of hard work. Mixed & mastered by Meyrick De La Fuente at Floodgate Audio it promises to be something seriously special.

Opening track “Anoxia” is a relentless technical piece of mastery that welcomes you in with open arms before battering you to death. Instant comparisons to the likes of Allegaeon spring to mind with the quality of the recording and the skill on show. Flowing straight into “Eternal Ending” like a river to the sea with no clear break, Graham uses dark whispers to contrast his usual throat shredding vocals and on off kilter evil nursery rhyme like segment is lit up with ghosts n’ ghouls like synths and a bright lead part. There is no accenting on the vocals and which makes the band hard to geographically place and straight out of the gate there is the sense that if they were in the US they would be a shoe in for the Summer Slaughter tour and snapped up by the likes of Sumerian Records. “Inertia Haze” is brings to the table some staccato riffs and off kilter returns to the root notes that make for an interesting technical break in the soundscape without going down the melodic route. Thought provoking lyrics presented by the music that is the push that makes you move is what God Eater are about and that is exactly what you get here.

Title track “All Flesh” has an ethereal quality with some seriously good solo moments and and double kick work from Coulson that relentlessly batters at your brain but it seems like merely the introduction to the nearly 8 minute long “Salvation” and the two are more or less a conjoined twin. That is something present across a number of the tracks and gives the whole release an album feel, that this is one body of work, cut into pieces rather than being a collection of individual songs. Buried synths add an underpinning to the technically proficient guitar work that is never technical for the sake of it and the band get the vocal talents of Dilan Alves to add some clean vocals to add something else into the witches cauldron. Guitarist Ross Beagan composed the music while also producing and recording it and his work is well put together, building gradually over a series of passages to create something that has an incredible depth.

A brief respite from the guitar work “Spirare” is a 69 second atmospheric piece of synth work with a spoken word accompaniment that could well end up being the live set opening tape reel. Building on that with “The Dreich“, which features the same synth part with some galloping kit work and sitar elements that bring The HAARP Machine to mind are a master stroke. They intertwine with “Silent Spring” that wastes no time with an introduction and if The Faceless could keep their act together, they could achieve something this good. Off kilter synths, a battering lyrical schizophrenia and an almost orchestral approach to Death Metal that attacks in waves and catches you off guard with the movements and timings. “Blood Moon” crosses the five and a half minute barrier as a tale of unrelenting evil that leaves no stone unturned as each member of God Eater delivers a power house performance. Saving the best to last is going that one step too far as while it is stand out moment, it’s in the context of a stand out album of unrelenting quality. Katie Oswell adds the sirens call to the back drop of the soundscape and when the music fades out so you’re left with the synths and her vocals alone, you have your fitting finale [8.5/10]

Track listing

1. Anoxia
2. Eternal Ending
3. Inertia Haze
4. All Flesh
5. Salvation (ft. Dilan Alves)
6. Spirare
7. The Dreich
8. Silent Spring
9. Blood Moon (ft. Katie Oswell)

All Flesh Is Grass” by God Eater is out now and available over at bandcamp

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