Album Review: Foetal Juice - Grotesque
Reviewed by Daniel Phipps
Following on from the bands stellar record Gluttony one of the UK's hardest working death metal acts Foetal Juice return with a slab of new material. The 4 piece from the North West who really reached some substantial heights following the release of the aforementioned record including but not limited to opening the main stage at Bloodstock have a big task on their hands to top what was a superbly crafted slab of death metal but if one thing you can be certain of is this band know exactly what is needed to create groove filled, nasty extreme metal.
Where Gluttony saw the band take their sound and add a dark almost black metal vibe to its sound which worked extremely well, I feel Grotesque has reverted back to the bands more signature sound. Those blackened elements are still part of the music, in fact they rear their head right at the opening of the album but Foetal Juice have definitely looked to aim this record more at the grove and grindy sound which they made the band's name upon. What is a real key to this album is the hooks and this record has hooks big enough to land a great white shark.
Take the track "Legion of the Grotesque" this is packed full of great groovy riffs and matched with equally awesome vocals which builds on the track's groove. Its vocalist Derek Carley’s second full length with the band and I must admit I find this performance to be far stronger. Not that he was bad on Gluttony, far from it I just feel the vocal flow is stronger on this record and really works better with the grooves and hooks that Grotesque is full of. What I really find quite enjoyable about a Foetal Juice record is just how tight the members are with the song writing. Afterall drummer Rob Harris and guitar player Ryan Whittaker have been in the band since its inception in 2005 and you really get a feeling that these 2 know exactly what makes the other tick in this regard.
In the 3 years since the release of Gluttony, and I must say you have really seen a huge growth from the band and Grotesque is an absolute monster record, well deserving of anyone who has an interest in the genre. It has enough of the hooks and grooves which will be of interest to your more casual death metal fan whilst remaining absolutely mean with a viscous twist for those with a more hardened ear towards the underground.