You Owe You Pay is definitely one I plucked out based on the incredible album artwork (click on it to see it bigger – ooh, yeah). Oh, look – someone who’s had a hole punched clean through their body by a muscular psycho. That’s got to have some good music inside…
Given the band’s name and the song titles (“Decimating the Living”, “Show Your Fucking Face”, “Your Guts My Glory…”), it’s no surprise that Carnal Decay are a death metal band. Specifically they’re a “slamming” death metal band, which as far as I can tell from listening to the album umpteen times through means that they’re death with some brilliant groove and utterly brutal breakdowns. This is death metal with feeling. Admittedly that feeling is a deep, unsettled hatred, but still.
The Swiss band have apparently made a name for themselves with their live act, something they’ve nurtured since their last album release six years ago. That experience is demonstrated to perfection on You Owe You Pay as they’ve created an incredibly heavy album you can actually “dance” to. As long as that doesn’t involve standing in place, swinging your arms around like a twat, though. Bang your head, stomp around, shove your way through a pit, bounce… this is an album seeped in rhythm and catchy riffs.
You’d think that this would perhaps take the extreme edge off the product as a whole, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Despite containing a bunch of songs that’ll get stuck in your head, each one is heavy as heavy can be. Listen to “Until You Die”, for instance. It’s down-tuned to something approaching three basement levels below Hell itself, yet even with the heavy bass rhythm and pounding drum assault, the guitar tones swoop around like a swarm of killer bees that are after your very soul.
A lot of death metal albums are the kind of thing you turn up and allow to seep over you. You Owe You Pay is an album you just have to pay attention to. It worms, burrows and batters its way into your head and demands to be listened to more than once.
I’m not going to pick stand-out tracks. The whole thing’s a belter.