The dentist looms above you, the drill begins spinning with that sickly whine as it pierces the tooth and that atrocious burning smell fills the air, and all the while you sit back with every muscle stiffened, holding on to the arms of the chair with white-knuckled intensity. The "drill" referred to in BRAIN DRILL may have nothing to do with dentistry, but the effect on the listener from this teeth-rattling display of technical death metal brutality on "Apocalyptic Feasting" is much the same. It is in fact one on of the best extreme tech-death albums I've heard since ORIGIN's "Informis Infinitas Inhumanitas", both albums completely blowing me away upon the very first listen.
It is the combination of technical wizardry with songwriting that is oddly catchy, yet not "melodic" in any traditional sense, that makes "Apocalyptic Feasting" such an ass-kicker. The band keeps the disc to 10 well written tracks that are fleshed out and arranged for maximum intensity and that make one-sitting listens relatively easy, assuming of course that your nervous system doesn't shut down in the process. Musically, the maniacal, arpeggio-sweep shred of guitarist Dylan Ruskin is reminiscent of Paul Ryan's (ORIGIN) playing and is absolutely stunning in its delivery. Ruskin's performances is just plain sadistic and yet many of the guitar parts are quite memorable, a far cry from the kind of tech-death discs that tend to lose the listener after the second track. In fact, each of these four players is an absolute monster. Lord Marco Pitruzzella wreaks havoc on conventional notions of speed and dexterity, while bassist Jeff Hughell assaults the frets with a seven-string finger tapping technique that results in as many memorable parts as Ruskin. Finally, Steve Rathjen perfects the art of the growl 'n' shriek vocal right out of the gates. His shrill delivery on the chorus of "Swine Slaughter" is as pleasurable as it is painful, but more importantly, you won't forget it. Just like you won't forget a track like "The Parasites" because of the manner in which it is written. This stuff is ridiculously good.
BRAIN DRILL can easily sit amongst tech-death leaders like ODIOUS MORTEM, ORIGIN and NEURAXIS. The scary part is that new releases from the latter two bands are yet to drop, contributing to what may very well make 2008 the year of technical death metal. "Apocalyptic Feasting" is an early contender for my year-end top 10 list. By all mean, grab this sucker.