EP Review: DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL by Escuela Grind (MNRK Heavy)

US based basement punks Escuela Grind will release their brand new EP, titled DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL on January 12th via MNRK Heavy.

The band’s third genre-based EP instalment, DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL of course tackles death metal, one of the most important and influential metal subgenres for each of the members. This riproaring four-song collection showcases their immediate songwriting growth from 2022’s full-length album Memory Theater. Melding classic Cannibal Corpse with new-era Frozen Soul – the EP delivers on Escuela Grind’s trademark mind-expanding approach and hostility. We even get a ferocious guest feature from Napalm Death’s, Barney Greenway.

Again mastered by Converge’s Kurt Ballou, this new deliverance of material from Escuela Grind shows the band adeptly turning their hand to soul-crushing Death Metal that inspires wall-of-death clashes and claims tropes of murder and revenge from a feminine angle. Recently, the group have supported artists as various as Baroness and Napalm Death/Unearth – and with plenty more dates soon, you’ll be hearing about Escuela Grind loads more in the coming year.

Escuela Grind is Katerina Economou on vocals and guitars, Krissy Morash on guitars, Jesse Adan Fuentes on drums and Thomas Sifuentes on bass.


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With 4 tracks and under 13 minutes of music to check out, you are expecting things to get a bit noisy. And they do. Straight from the off, where, in the disgusting tones and grime of opener Ball and Chain, you realise you aren’t in for a comfortable experience. Heavily distorted guitars, deep guttaral vocals, loose and echoing drums attack you in a wave of chaos. Within the noise, there is plenty to enjoy though. Vocals are meaty and powerful and there is a serious chunk of headbanging rhythm to be found in the eye of the storm.

Punishment Ritual brings a mix with some supremely intense fast sections combining nicely with slower, chunkier groove, all wrapped up in a body bag of noise and fuzz. I do find myself getting more at ease as my brain adapts to the sounds. There are definite detah metal vibes to everything but delivered in a raw, unpolished, recorded in a garage style. That is how the band describe themselves roughly too so well done for an accurate description.

There isn’t a whole heap of variety on DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL so when we do get little change ups, they are welcome relief. Abyssal Plane brings a different vocal tone to parts of it and the higher screech of guitars elevates the song a bit, giving it a more of an identity. They ridiculously slow punchy section is really cool too and the ending portion with it’s fuller sound and big groove is as catchy as you could hope for.

Escuala Grind closes the EP with Meat Magnet which also features  the iconic Barney Greenway (Napalm Death). A little bit of a change up again in the pace of vocal delivery is great and all backed by drums that hit new levels of speed and aggression. It settles into that bigger chunk for the verses and a little bit more backing vocals adds additional power and depth. Still chaos, still slightly nuts but that over the top rawness just makes the moments of groove seem so much more than they actually are. You find yourself craving those moments where it all comes together, then craving the chaos again straight after.

DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL isn’t going to set the world of music ablaze but it will grab your attention and, if seeing it live, it must be impossible not to pit to this. The drums occasionally sound like they are being played on empty barrels, the riffs are sometimes hard to determine beneath the fuzz but, despite that all sounding like negatives, it works. All the chaos and cacophony combine to make for an uncomfortable listen but one that you start feeling at ease with, start picking up those moments of organisation where it settles in a bit and then enjoying the insanity when it lets loose. This is good fun, energetic and aggressive metal.

Grab yourself a copy of DDEEAATTHHMMEETTAALL from Escuala Grind on Bandcamp, here.

Escuala Grind Links

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  • Brendan Fisher

    Owner/Editor/Writer/YouTuber - Heavy Metal and reading, two things I have always loved so they are the two areas you will find most of my reviews. Post apocalyptic is my jam and I always have a book on the go and have for decades now. From a metal perspective, age has softened my inadequacies and I now operate with an open mind, loving many bands from many sub genres but having a particular admiration for the UK underground scene. In my other time, when not focused on Dad duties and work, I try to support the craft beer movement by drinking as much of it as I can and you will also find me out on the streets, walking. I love walking, I love exploring new places and snapping nature photos as I go.

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