Published Mar 05, 2020Kruelty are a Japanese hardcore band combining ravaging beatdown fume with droning doom and death metal; a striking combination of One Second Thought, Xibalba, Straight Savage Style and Asphyx. It's a slow, revolting take on heavy music that's not for the faint of heart.
The great thing about the Tokyo-based act's debut, A Dying Truth, is anyone who somehow stumbles upon it will enjoy it thoroughly. Literally everyone — within the lens of hardcore, that is — will enjoy this LP. If you truly enjoy hard, seven-minute death metal songs you can dance to, there is not a single second of A Dying Truth that wasn't constructed specifically for your taste palette.
"Introduction to…" sludges at a snail's pace, though quickly shifting gears to the one-minute-and-change "Definition," a vocal-less track that's equal parts Devourment and Detain. Because no one takes the mic here, the energy of the song has a bit of a ceiling, though it might also result in some serious tension-releasing projections from listeners (read: spin kicks). "Nothing More" is quite possibly the most unrelenting piece of music on the record, and even the neighbouring single "Ancient Words" sounds like a chopped and screwed remix of Dying Fetus.
The first half of A Dying Truth is paler than the second, but speaks to just how much more Kruelty have to offer. There are no vocals on "Vengeance" until over two minutes in, which once again builds agonizing unease over a sludgy riff. Once the vocals hit, they're muffled and sketchy, like the best death metal in music history. Understated, they allow for the rabid nature of Kruelty's guitar work to be fully realized in the Taylor Young (Nails, Twitching Tongues, Disgrace) mix. The song is six minutes of your life you'll never get back — possibly more if situate yourself near a Kruelty pit — but so menacing and amusing, you wouldn't even notice.
The composition of "Darkside" works through rattling distortion and doomy bass lines to a payout of adrenaline-crashing beatdown. The heaviest passages of this song are near-perfect. There's so much going on in this cut; you'll either feel spoiled, overwhelmed or trampled by how downright heavy Kruelty are.
The best beatdown hardcore often has an air of humour and parody to it. Let's be sincere: it's objectively funny to make music so aggressive the only solution to processing it is picking heavy things up and placing them back down. Kruelty unlearn these behaviours on A Dying Truth, offering a thick portion of music both abstract and uncompromisingly hard. (Profound Lore)