The apocalypse is nigh and Finnish grindcore entity Rotten Sound has crafted the perfect soundtrack to accompany humanity's impending extinction. Aptly titled "Apocalypse", eighth studio album by Finland's leading grindcore machine is dropping into 2023 with the same blistering speed and chaotic impetus as an asteroid searing through atmosphere and crushing everything upon impact. Each song delivering abrupt yet violent aftershocks, delivering an auditory assault with its unstoppable, seismic force.
"Apocalypse" is available on vinyl, CD and digital via Season of Mist, March 31, 2023
"I'm trying to find a positive way to say that maybe, just maybe, we were a bit lazy for a while" is how with a grin vocalist Keijo Niinimaa, the band's founding member along with guitar player Mika Aalto, is trying to explain why it took the band so long to reload its creative batteries. "This being said, the recording has been ready since January 2022 but then we had to finalize the artwork, schedule the manufacturing of the vinyl and find the right time to release it. But what really made a difference this time around was we did a full preproduction for it. Last time we did that was for Cycles back in 2008. That process may have added an extra six months but it was worth it because we really took our time to finetune every little details until we were entirely satisfied. We probably would have released it earlier though if what happened, well, hadn't happen you know." On March 8th 2020, Rotten Sound completed the 'Campaign For Musical Destruction' tour along Napalm Death, Bat and Eyehategod and Misery Index. Nine days later, the world suddenly stopped and robbed him of his inspiration for a while. "The songwriting had already started in 2019 but for about six months, I didn't know where I wanted to go to next lyrically speaking until it finally clicked somehow."
The definitive recording itself was a pretty quick affair. "Overall it took us something a little bit of over three weeks to record, mix and master the whole thing." The vocals and drums were done at Sound Supreme whereas the guitars and bass were cut in Nordic Audio Labs. Then Jesse Gander at Rain City Studios mixed everything in December 2021 before Brad Boatright mastered everything in January 2022 at Audio Siege Studios.
Yes, Apocalypse may only last a little less than twenty-one minutes but very few will be left standing once the chaos and fury summoned by those eighteen tracks are silenced. "We discussed it a bit but we all agreed that relatively short running time makes the album even more compact. Besides, it has a faster pace and more rhythm changes than any of our previous albums." It's also their new bass player Matti Raappana first recording with the band. He replaced Kristian Toivainen who left in 2020: "besides his playing, Matti brought his energy and his backing vocals to the band, you can actually his screams n 70% of the new songs. Plus Matti is a live engineer and like our drummer Sami Latva, he lives in Tampere so that makes our life easy too."
On the new album title-track, Keijo screams "darkness surrounds us/there is no future/Everyone will die/Apocalypse will come". He reveals that "initially, the working-title for the song 'Apocalypse' was 'Positivity', sarcastically of course" before describing the album, lyrically, as "a bit of warning. I'm the last person to be called a prophet but I'm trying to sound positive here, like 'can't we get together and avoid this upcoming apocalypse?', even if I sound pretty pissed off when I do!" The longest track here is one minute and fifty-seven seconds, the shortest only twenty-eight seconds. Most of the songtitles themselves are the last piece of the puzzle and made of one or two words "which describe the song best, that's been our way of looking at it since Murderworks in 2002." Hence new tracks like 'Denialist', 'Patriots' or 'Inflation' leaving little room for interpretation: "let's say those songs have 2020 and 2021 marked all over shall we? I spent a lot of time watching the world going even weirder than before during those two years, even if it feels less weird now that we're not staying at home all the time anymore." Still he says choose as opening track 'Pacify' as "we truly want to be advocates for peace on this planet and focus on something else than fear and power." All this while still playing one of the most furious and intense grindcore there is and offering 2023 his first massive sonic blast of gargantuan proportions that is.
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Conceived in the city of Vaasa, Finland in 1993, Rotten Sound have firmly established themselves as one of the leading acts of the grindcore scene can field an impressive catalogue of eight studio albums, eight EPs, three split singles, a single, and a live DVD and relentless touring all over the World. Expertly wielding the fierce brutality and massive aggression of their genre, the Finns add intelligent songwriting, effective arrangements, and musical proficiency as well as subtle death metal elements to their sound.
Their new album "Apocalpyse" delivers eighteen short sharp chops that hit home perfectly as Rotten Sound are gearing up their musical juggernaut before crushing stages in 2023. Hold on tight and enjoy the bliss of this heavily whirling grind-tornado!