Origin | ‘Omnipresent’
Brutality merchants Origin have been long held among the standard bearers for withering, discordant, gore soaked death metal.
Undeniably heavy, the tag line, nevertheless, does not always entirely ring true, as there is a sense of one dimensionality throughout their back catalogue.
Often, the four piece have been guilty of being unfoccused in terms of creating memorable riffs and structures to compliment the ferocity and technical ability they serve up. ‘Entity’ aside, Origin have not released an album with true staying power.
Thankfully, that has been remedied by this tremendous riff driven, violent release.
The trump cards in Origin’s hand are all played here. Ultra tight musicianship, and in partiular John Longstreth’s outrageously manic drumming, his impossibly accurate and relentless blast beats, is displayed from the opening sortie.
The percussion reminds me of listening to Cryptopsy or Absu for the first time, my ears incapable of fathoming how the human body could be capable of such eye watering speed and accuracy.
New voalist John Keyser, a name I was until now unfamiliar with, delivers a bludgeoning, lung busting performance on his debut here. The bellows sound like they are coming from the deepest depths of an insane asylum, and on ‘THRALL_FULCRUM_APEX’, the listener would be forgiven for mistaking Keyser for a dangerous lunatic on the rampage.
The relentless brutality that has been a hallmark has not been discarded, but the immediately audible difference is the honed, harnessed vehemence, a belated ability to squeeze their musical merits into something coherent.
It’s the riff building that raises this record over and above most of it’s predecessors. ìManifest Desolateî, probably the strongest of a fearsome brigade of tracks shows Origin have learned how to use bananas technical widdlery as an augmentation to the riff and not the other way around.
Lightning quick and ferocious as expected, but the carte de jour here offers a doff of the cap to the headbangers and horn raisers with an infectious, dare I say it, catchy riff as the spine of the song.
It’s a rarity in this genre, and the execution of this mentally unstable music is unrestrained yet meticulous.
I reviewed the equally impressive Wormed last year, and this is the first time I have been flattened in the same way since.
This is psychotic, and truly edgy music in an epoch where desensitisation and an impossibly large talent pool make that difficult to achieve. Like their Spanish counterparts, Origin have unshrouded a relentlessly savage(in the barbarian sense) album. The engineering work of Colin Marston must take some credit, as the razor sharp guitars and the pummeling clarity of the drum sound in the mix are almost flawless.
The lyrics, however dubious the merits of them in bands like Origin are, give off a nihilistic, pitiless ornamention to the tunes.
Hesitancy in bothering with Origins inlay cards may be a little unfounded, and the written word is certainly above Chris Barnes-esque bollocks that are often enountered elsewhere.
As for the artwork, it’s about as vanilla as you can get, but it’s not something that should twist the listeners knickers one way or another Origin may have until now had a niche following, as confusing song constructions despite never once changing time signature are likely to frustrate and create reluctance to dedicate more than a spin or two, but this is a slab of intelligently put together and callous brutality, a record of enormous merit.
Horse it inta ya, Cynthia.
4.2/5 – Kevin Jacob ::: 06/07/14