The Rotted - Get Dead Or Die Trying
Metal Blade
Grindcore, Death Metal
11 songs (38:21)
Release year: 2008
Metal Blade
Reviewed by Goat

News that infamous English Goregrinders Gorerotted were changing their name to The Rotted and switching direction wasn’t exactly a surprise given how the band’s 2005 album A New Dawn For The Dead dropped the black comedy (prior song titles including such joys as Severed Shawn And Sold As Porn, Masticated By The Spasticated and Only Tools And Corpses) and showcased a deeper, more complex sound. Well, new album Get Dead Or Die Trying pretty much follows in that path laid down, albeit with an even more Progressive and Technical vibe to the songs.

No, The Rotted haven’t quite gone Tech-Death – although there are certainly steps in that direction – but what most people will notice on initial listens is the streamlined nature of the Grind elements, a noticeable Punk influence (obvious from the cover art) even leading some to lump this album in with the Deathcore hordes. They’re wrong, of course; this is quite far from the donkey noises and mindless breakdowns that we’re all sick of. Instead, this is a compelling mixture of Grindcore and Death Metal that isn’t afraid to experiment. Opening blast Nothin’ But A Nosebleed simply rips forth, a mid-track breakdown (no, not that sort!) adding spice, with technical riffs bringing Cryptopsy to mind for a moment. It’s clearly the work of experienced songwriters and kicks the album off to a great start.

Moments like the Akercockean clean riffs in A Return To Insolence have universal appeal but the album is sure to appeal to Death Metalheads above all. The likes of Kissing You With My Fists have a gritty, urbane and violent vibe that calls to mind images of the scummier side of the British life: ‘glassings’ in pubs, gangs of yobs on the tube, carjackings, beatings and stabbings galore. That it’s a kickass song with several false endings and a wonderfully melodic section is by the by: what we have here is a reflection of British life far more brutal and dark than anything the mainstream likes of The Kaiser Chiefs and Lily Allen could produce. The lyrics are quite deep and thoughtful as well, suggesting someone looking back on his life with regret at what he’s done and what he hasn’t, something everyone can relate with.

There are many, many strong moments on the album, from the unexpected soloing of Angel Of Meth to psychedelic instrumental A Brief Moment Of Regret. The Body Tree mixes the atmospherics of mid-period Napalm Death with old-school Deicide to great effect, whilst the title track utilises the bass to simply make a kickass Death Metal song. The album highlight, Fear And Loathing In Old London Town, starts out with the band’s usual Death Metal greatness before descending into a chaotic whirl of police sirens and paves the way for the closing cover of the 28 Days Later soundtrack, something I found rather boring at first but which soon proves its worth once you’ve experienced its atmospheric sludge a few times.

Although even our own artists never appreciate the British Metal scene, releases like this prove that there’s much life in the old dog yet. With new albums from Benediction and Napalm Death just around the corner the old school is stirring again, whilst a legion of talented new bands get ignored by the world because of the visibility of the likes of Bring Me The Horizon. Get Dead Or Die Trying is more than just a great album; it’s a statement of intent. Let’s hope we get plenty more releases as good as this in the coming years.

Killing Songs :
Nothin’ But A Nosebleed, A Return To Insolence, Kissing You With My Fists, Fear And Loathing In Old London Town, 28 Days Later
Goat quoted 82 / 100
Other albums by The Rotted that we have reviewed:
The Rotted - Ad Nauseam reviewed by Goat and quoted 79 / 100
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