Album Review: Deafheaven - Ordinary Corrupt Human Love

13 July 2018 | 4:23 pm | Christopher H James

"The sound of a colossal middle digit being flipped at purists everywhere."

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For better or for worse, Ordinary Corrupt Human Love introduces a new, unnamed concept in music.

The tremolo riffs that typify black metal are absent and even the dreamlike blackgaze components have been stripped out. Black-clad drones who spit the words "hipster metal" from in between clenched teeth will wail like banshees at the gentle, wistful piano that opens the album like soft hints of morning sunlight. You might imagine that Deafheaven had found their romantic muse, were it not for the mangled screaming that erupts halfway through. 

There are more rock elements here than metal ones; bright major chords, clean-sounding solos and melody. George Clarke's throat-lacerating vocals are the only remaining extreme element. The band sound overjoyed at jettisoning the cold, dead chains of genre conventions, making for their most enjoyable work to date and possibly the only metal album that might pull you out of depression or a hangover, as the ten-plus-minute epics Honeycomb and Canary Yellow flow from one passage to the next, on a journey that's always searching purposefully for a satisfying ending.

This is Deafheaven's most uncompromising work and the sound of a colossal middle digit being flipped at purists everywhere.

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