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Óværa, “Guts,” from Perdido en Islandia (Self-Released, 2019)

Reykjavík, Iceland's Óværa originally formed in late-2014 (I think?), firmed up and became a bit more active two years later, and just released their debut five-song EP, Perdido en Islandia (also on Spotify), a week ago. As the track above might suggest, the nucleus of their approach comes across as an intriguingly vicious and pummeling combo of, say, Botch and Hellchild.

For one thing, the insanely over-the-top vocals are all over the place from guttural to snarled to borderline cackling screams. Alongside the tracks' ultra-brutal aesthetic, this can tend toward a death/grind lean, though I wouldn't really pin the group down as either death metal or grindcore. At the same time, their knack for stabbing, dissonant surges of (oft-chaotic) metalcore—on rare occasion delivered with a sludgily rockin' undercurrent—is just... something more than that, you know?

Perhaps the fact that they've been honing their chops for a few years explains why the EP is such a tightly-performed and well-produced outing? Whatever the case: great tones, excellent mix (highlighting variances between the interwoven guitar and bass runs), etc. I'm already curious to hear what will come next...