ORIGIN
"Echoes of Decimation"

(Relapse)

01. Reciprocal
02. Endless Cure
03. The Burner
04. Designed To Expire
05. Cloning the Stillborn
06. Staring From the Abyss
07. Amoeba
08. Debased Humanity
09. Echoes of Decimation

RATING: 3/10

In order to properly record a band playing at the kind of velocity ORIGIN favors, certain compromises must be made. Low end just muddies things up, real drums are hard to hit consistently with enough force to sound good, and vocals and guitar riffs have to stay in a tight, compressed little sonic box, because there's no room for them to go anywhere else in the mix. So you have a record of what's supposed to be the most barbaric, violent, chaotic, vicious music ever captured on disc, and it ends up sounding a little… well… castrated.

Put simply, there's nothing "brutal" about ORIGIN. At this point, it's just become a science experiment — how much sweep-picking noodling can we throw in? How fast can the entire record dither past? Can there be more snare hits every four beats, just to clutter up the triggered drum tracks and make them sound even more like a popcorn popper in a cardboard box? It's like Miami booty-bass music designed to be blasted out of tricked-out car trunk subwoofers – it's engineered noise made solely to push an envelope, and it has nothing to do with music as it's commonly practiced by people who know how to rock.

NAPALM DEATH know how to play at extreme velocities without sacrificing emotion, rage, and human heart. Hell, DYING FETUS, and KRISIUN, two of the bands ORIGIN rips off, manage to have a little bit of personality, even at breakneck speed. ORIGIN has all the charisma and sonic appeal of a washing machine with a broken belt on the spin cycle. The record is over in 26 minutes, and nothing — I mean nothing — is memorable enough to stick with you after it's over. It's not even an impressive display of technicality, other than the sheer stamina needed to play a song this fast.

A little dynamic… a couple slow parts… a vocal that sounds fully awake… something that colors outside the lines a little bit, and shows me that ORIGIN are artists, not machinists. That's all I ask! This is faceless, rote clockwork racket that might as well have been created by robots. "Echoes of Decimation" is a shiny and precise gadget, but it has fuck all to do with listenable death metal.

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