Founded in 2010, the Finnish act Decaying brings forth to us a mixture of death metal which most of us should be pretty much familiar with. The Finnish trio (previously a duo) combine various elements of death and doom metal resulting in pure old-school death metal worship. The closest comparison could be made to that of death-doom Asphyx but still comprising loads of elements of bands such as Bolt Thrower, Morbid Angel or Hail of Bullets. The latter act does not only have instrumental similarities (or may I say, more appropriately, has influenced the Finns) but also the band chose to head into a similar lyrical direction: history and war. So far, the band has released two demos: New Order (2010), The Annihilator (2011) and two full-lengths: Devastate (2011) and Encirclement (2012).
The clearest element of the band’s music which makes the comparison to Asphyx inevitable are the dirty high pitched growls which resemble Martin van Drunen. However, the vocalist/guitarist/bassist, Matias Nastolin, seems to enjoy shifting from high pitched to low, deep, brutal vocals. After all, they say that variety is good for you. Indeed, the changes do not ruin the music on both albums but rather make it brutally more enjoyable. Although the vocal work is superb, it is the instruments which these guys excel at. Fat, crushing riffs resemble the tanks of The Battle of Kursk while the low and deep drum sound resembles the heart beat of the infantry at The Battle of the Somme (and probably the civilians caught in any kind of warfare!). The clear audibility of the bass guitar is what causes this band’s material to be regarded as “awesome” by me (because my opinion really counts… believe me) but also what makes their music dwell really deep in the school of old death metal (and metal, in general).
The material is truly exceptional. Not only death metal brutality and doom-ality is to be found in it but also ear-grabbing guitar melodies and solos such as on tracks like “The Aftermath”, “Annihilation” off Devastate or “Operation Citadel” off Encirclement. We, the listeners, are also allowed to enjoy and feel their music through longer tracks such as “Annihilation” or “The Rising Sun”. Brutality and melody is well mixed. Encirclement begins with an awesome melodic intro, which at times made me think this was going to be a prog album, later turns into a brutal doom-history laden death metal ride labelled as “Operation Citadel” (which also reminded me quite a bit of the death metal superstar group Hail of Bullets). Then we have tracks like “From Cradle to the Grave” which can have some Bolt Thrower-like galloping rhythms and very interesting bass sounds. Now all we are left with are the lyrics. The content on their first output seems to tackle the emotions and feelings of soldiers, war stories; while their second output deals more with historical facts such as “Operation Citadel” which is about the infamous tank battle at Kursk during the Second World War, “The Battle of The Somme”, “The Hell of Verdun” and “The Rising Sun”. The latter is a historical event which most of us should be familiar with… especially if you’ve seen the film Pearl Harbour.
All in all, Decaying prove to us that they are indeed serious in what they are doing. The great sound production, the great musicianship (guitar riffs and melodies, drums, bass, vocals) all prove this. So… do yourself a favour and get their material via the Hellthrasher webstore… now!
Matias Nastolin – Guitars, Bass, Vocals
Henri Hirvonen (2011 – present) – Guitars
Benjam Lahdenpää (2011 – present) – Drums