A six-minute lesson in wild-eyed extremity, the aural nightmare that is ‘Empathy Is A Gift’ is not only a brief treat for grindcore devotees, but a surprisingly ferocious affair from post-hardcore darling Craig Owens, better known for his sweet croon than indecipherable roaring.
From the throat shredding, ‘Jane Doe’ era screech which opens up ‘Werewolfs, Not Swearwolfs’, shades of hardcore luminaries Botch, The Chariot or even the schizoid assault of The Dillinger Escape Plan flavour the EP’s unrelenting assault, all maniacal riff tirades and visceral rasping.
It’s thoroughly unpleasant stuff, yet between the deranged discordance there is a palpable sense of fun, with Owens obviously having the time of his life, foregoing all the trapping of scene super-stardom and reveling in BEA5T‘s rudderless, unhinged aggression.
Punishing, visceral, and a riotously fun listen, ‘Empathy Is A Gift’‘s all round quality and brisk run-time begs repeat plays, and for a dose of jaw shattering lunacy, is more than worth your time.
Written by Tony Bliss (@TBliss88)