Record Reviews

Beast Mode: Pound of Flesh EP

Though opening with a delicately arranged and nearly folkloric intro called “To Your Rest”—perhaps a mark of guitarist and vocalist Corey Flowers, who holds a doctorate in guitar performance and minor in music composition—Pound of Flesh does not waste any time before lurching into its high-octane, ludicrously shred-tastic style. Drawing influences from blackened thrash, melodic death metal and traditional heavy metal, tracks such as “Frostbite” and “Arise” nail a combination of growling vocals, blast beat drumming and tremolo picking that somehow sound cataclysmic yet weightless, like being crushed into octillions of atoms and peacefully blasted back into outer space. Essentially, the sheer technical proficiency of Flowers, guitarist Henry Mitchell III, bassist Cameron Yohr and drummer Guido Hrovat proves the artistic merit of the genre by creating such densely flourished and dizzying melodies. Pound of Flesh will be officially released on Apr. 2, and Akademia Brewing Company will host an outdoor listening party on Apr. 3 from 2–6 p.m. To celebrate the occasion, the brewery will also release its second Beast Mode-inspired concoction, a hazy blood orange IPA that shares a name and album/label artwork with the EP. In addition to CDs, a limited run of cassette tapes will be released through local heavy metal record shop Shadebeast’s “Noir” series.