Technical Death Metal/Grindcore
I roughly recalled a brief encounter with Spain’s Hybrid back in 2008 when they first released their debut full length, The 8th Plague, but was not really captivated by their technical stye of music with my preference for simpler and easier-listening music back then. When news of the band releasing their follow-up almost 5 years later was announced, it got my attention, with memories of the band’s rather unique style coming back to my mind, with Angst being released under the excellent Deepsend Records.
The first few moments of Flesh Fusion Threshold might leave one thinking that this is another tech-death band in the veins of Suffocation and Dying Fetus, but soon enough one realises how much more variety there is in the album, as the band unexpectedly goes into short bursts rather jazzy segments, and these moments help Hybrid sound like a brutalised version of bands such as Cynic, the recent Quest of Aidance or Obscura in terms of the technicality and complexity in the music. The more grindcore-ish moments, with the intense energy and the barking vocals of Oscar at times even reminds me of the weird-fuckery that goes on in bands like Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire.
The technical prowess of the band is rather obvious, and this is most observable in the song structures, such as the seamless fusion of brutal, crushing death metal and the jazzy segments. Songs like Enter the Void even goes into a slight Swedish death metal segment with the d-beat driven style in the middle of the track. As though the complexity weren’t enough to prove the band’s abilities, each of the members also display ease in the execution of their instruments, and while it may sound as though each of the members were doing their own thing, when put together the result is pretty spectacular and extremely coherent. Even guest musician Oscar, who handles vocals, bass and keyboards is given the air to shine, with his bass guitar mixed sufficiently high to show off his chops.
Throughout the album as well there is a rather sci-fi, futuristic feel, though this says nothing about the constant high tension that is in the air, with the usage of things such a spoken samples. The jazzy segments also complements the death metal segments, and while most tech death albums suffer from being overly mechanical and devoid of emotions, Hybrid cleverly makes use of their jazz sounds to bring in that slight human touch, at the same time providing a slight calm amidst the insane storm that goes on around.
Certainly, Hybrid isn’t the first band to write such complex style of music, with the heavy influences from various pioneering technical death metal bands. But it has been quite a long while that an album as technical as such has managed to fully captured my attention.