Top Ten of 2017: Kyle Rasmussen of Vitriol

Portland, Oregon’s Vitriol released their sophomore EP, Pain Will Define Their Death, a recording that establishs this band as one of the most thrilling new prospects in extreme metal, earlier this year
Through the EP’s three tracks, the band lashes out with a style rooted in the turn-of-the-millennium works of Morbid Angel, Hate Eternal, and Nile – death metal landmarks like Gateways to Annihilation, King of All Kings, and Black Seeds of Vengeance. Vitriol’s three members – guitarist/vocalist Kyle Rasmussen, bassist/vocalist Adam Roethlisberger, and drummer Scott Walker – attack the hallowed genre with a fresh aggression that cannot be faked. Dense, visceral, overwhelming, Vitriol’s tornado of sound is familiar but new.
Ghettoblaster recently spoke to Rasmussen about his favorite records of the year. This is what he told us.

  1. Death Like Mass, Jak zabija diabel

Orthodox black metal delivered with relentless violence. Antaeus meets Funeral Mist. Their approach resulted in the most impactful release of the year for me.

  1. Sinister, Syncretism

This record listens like a well restored classic car. It’s nothing you haven’t seen before, but when done with conviction, responsibility, and authenticity its impact is monumental.

  1. Suffering Hour, In Passing Ascension

Not your daddy’s local spooky-skronk band. Suffering Hour speaks a familiar language in their own voice. This one is full of refreshing surprises that defy the tropes of a genre.

  1. Immolation, Atonement

Immolation is the last remaining classic household name of death metal with zero blemishes in their catalogue. Here’s another testament to their seemingly bottomless well of inspiration.

  1. Ascended Dead, Abhorrent Manifestation

Pure fucking maniacal violence. Don’t sweep this one under the rug thinking it’s another grain on the beach of hipster old school revival bullshit. This record is pissed and full of unconventional technicality.

  1. The Ominous Circle, Appalling Ascension

While feeling derivative at times as they’re tapping into a sound that has been nearly bled dry, their attention to the art of the riff in lieu of self indulgent dissonant meandering anchors their sound and cements this debut as a very real and heavy hitting death metal record.

  1. Daemusinem, Thy Ungodly Defiance

This is Putridity taking a crack at “conventional” death metal. That’s all that really needs to be said. Shit fucking kills.

  1. Morbid Angel, Kingdoms Disdained

Look, it’s no Formulas. I get it. And coming off of the album that shall not be named they could’ve released nearly anything with great effect. It’s solid, it’s competent, it’s the greatest duo of death metal history (Tucker and Azagthoth.) Wish it had more energy, but this’ll do.

  1. Bell Witch, Mirror Reaper

I have to be honest, I haven’t actually finished this record/song. I simply haven’t found the time to dedicate to such an experiential release. But at about 20 minutes in I know this will be another great release by the only current funeral doom band that has managed to captivate me in years.

  1. Biesy, Noc lekkich obyczajow

Pretty par for the course jangly and rattling dissonant death metal. But PR’s use of hypnotic repetition is surprisingly effective, and the production was a nice surprise. And blast beats. Blast beats rule.
Worthy mention:
Cenotaph, Perverse Dehumanized Dysfunctions
These Turkish mad men were barely edged out of the top 10. I blame the squeaky clean production for robbing it of the filthiness that should accompany these songs.