Co-Exist - Violent Intentions Begin with Slow Incisions
Self Release
16 songs (46:55)
Release year: 2011
Reviewed by Jaime
When it comes to Scottish metal bands I've always noticed a slightly feral vibe to the once that stand out, be it the power metal ones or death metal ones. Sadly we only really have two biggish bands to our name, Alestorm and Man Must Die (only one of those fit my above description, guess which one) and our massive local scene goes along completely unnoticed. But you can still pick out the good bands from the bad by listening out for that feeling, that sound that is unmistakeably ours, like a thousand hairy ginger bastards decked out in plaid rampaging over the hills.

If there's one band that fulfil this criteria more than any other it's Co-Exist. They've been around the block a while, and are firm favourites of grind godfathers Napalm Death, who’s influence doesn't go unnoticed throughout the album. Opening track Manhunter is pretty straight forward in showing what the band are all about. They want to fuck your shit up. It’s full on violence from the get go with vocalists Mark, Dawson and Quzzy snarling and roaring over the top of this towering, monolithic guitar sound. This and second track A Skinning of People You Hate are practically epics in grindcore terms, hitting the four and five minute marks respectively but it does nothing to hold back their intensity. Skinning’s outro is something straight out of a horror film, it’s stupidly unnerving and further underlines the fact that Co-Exist want you dead. There’s some latter day Carcass worship in the likes of A Violent Process and Grind You Fuckers to Dust and some all out chaos in The Comedown, Ticks, Rats and Traitors and Fingers and Thumbs, the aforementioned Napalm Death influence seeps through thanks to track like X Versus Y and Verbal and there’s even, surprisingly, the somewhat black metal sounding Snapped. Well, parts of it anyway. There’s a fair mix of things in here but it all rotates around the band’s core musical nexus.

There’s a number of tracks here that I’ve not even covered, grindcore being grindcore there’s still a fair number on here but nothing stupid. Instead it’s a bit more concentrated; each song is an actual song as opposed to a half minute unintelligible blast that you can barely tell apart from the rest. Interestingly the band has covered a song from guitarist Charlie and drummer Quzzy’s former band. It’s similar in parts to Co-Exist’s output here besides the rather 90’s chorus that reminds me a bit of Fear Factory more than anything else, and the random little groovy bit that was in fashion back then. Speaking of Fear Factory the odd clean vocal parts that show up are at times similar to Burton Bell’s delivery, and it works for some songs but is a tad lame in others. And of course, there are film samples dotted around the album as well, and it works well in the likes of Manhunter and Rope Burns but seem a tad odd in others, like X Versus Y.

I’m hardly an avid grind fan but even I found this enjoyable (not sure if that’s the word I should be using given the style) to listen to. There are some issues with the mix like the vocals being lost a bit and the kick sometime cutting through too much but on the whole it’s solid. The guitars sound stupidly heavy, and the bass tone kind of reminded me of early Sepultura. It’s especially noticeable in the cover song Neutralise so the little 90’s hit there was pretty cool. Some tracks stand out more, like the strong openers which are enough for it to clamp on to your skull and force itself through your ears. It’s vicious from top to bottom and the band want to make sure you know it.

Now here’s hoping that the rest of the Scottish scene gets noticed sometime soon.
Killing Songs :
Manhunter, A Skinning of People You Hate, Grind You Fuckers to Dust, The Comedown, Rope Burns, May Cause Seizures, Neutralise, Ticks, Rats and Traitors
Jaime quoted 82 / 100
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