Album Review: Mass Casualty – Death Count

Over the past few years, Buffalo death metallers, Mass Casualty, have found themselves settling into new grooves amidst a few crucial lineup changes. Now, with Tommy Longenecker (lead guitar, backing vocals) having been a part of the band’s writing process for more than two years and Nate White (Sleepers) filling in on drums, Mass Casualty are ready to take 2021 by storm with their new EP, Death Count.

The blending of all three vocals from Chris Gooch (bass, lead vocals), Chad Grant (rhythm guitar, lead vocals), and Tommy Longenecker (lead guitar, backing vocals) comes across as nothing short of a massive wall of bludgeoning sound. The combination of all three screams at MC’s forefront enhances the band’s overall presence tenfold. Nate’s unique blasts, fills, and double bass accents also add a new dimension to MC’s subtle chaos factor. This “chaos factor” is an element that has ALWAYS been with the band, for those who think that “caveman riffs” (MC’s unique slams) can’t come equipped with carefully embedded technical moments. The new EP, Death Count, comes packed with evil lead guitar melodies, quick harmonic rakes, dark harmonies, tasteful pinch harmonics, and lots of juicy dissonance in higher registers.

Mass Casualty have always prided themselves on being a journey through all death metal, as opposed to committing to one subgenre within the overall death metal subgenre. This is not an easy thing to accomplish, and it’s even harder to get those who are exclusively subscribed to one type of death metal on board. Death Count , as a whole album, gets away from the deathcore style breakdowns of earlier MC releases, and focuses more on heavy, diminished riffing. Songs like “Divine Slaughter” bring a “less is more” type attitude to the table with simple riffs that get stuck in your head, while songs like “A Gargantuan Mound of Putrid Flesh” showcase a little more classic death metal-friendly chaos.

I can confidently say that this is the heaviest Mass Casualty release to date. Death Count proudly presents six solid, BRUTAL death metal tracks recorded, mixed, and mastered by fill-in drummer, Nate White. A lyric video will be released for one of the tracks during the week of 8/8/21 – 8/15/21. However, the first single has already been released. Check it out on YouTube below!

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