“…Phallic Flagellation delivers as artillery shots of high-impact, short-lived, basement gangbang-style black metal that has the nihilistic aggression and disregard of grindcore synthesized with it. It is existentially violent music.”
Like Father, Like Son
God is Dead, Death is God
The Word of the Law
Deathgod Messiah exist at the basement level of American black metal. They are a unit far disconnected from anything current-era; trends, excessive branding, exaggerated songwriting, and other such things. While descriptors such as ‘black metal’ or ‘war metal’ are just indications of a band’s character, the terms cast large shadows, covering a vast field of bands. Questioning the validity of the term ‘war metal’ is an argument that does exist and ‘black metal’ can represent anything from Darkspace to Dimmu Borgir, depending on the source. Calling Deathgod Messiah’s Phallic Flagellation ‘black metal’ robs it of some of its character. Blending elements of death metal and grindcore around a core of black metal, Phallic Flagellation is a demonic mutant of sorts.
Independently released in 2013 and seeing a return recently under the NoVisable Scars label, Phallic Flagellation is a short burst of deconstructionist black metal. Invoking the wild-hearted mania of early Impaled Nazarene coupled with the obscure, acute delivery of Black Witchery or Blasphemy, Phallic Flagellation delivers as artillery shots of high-impact, short-lived, basement gangbang-style black metal that has the nihilistic aggression and disregard of grindcore synthesized with it. It is existentially violent music.
Production is basement-level, abrasive but dynamic with a churning low-end presence. Guitars are very clear, the bass recklessly spews notes with various degrees of picking intensity, and the drums occupy nearly all the center space along with the vocals. Most will agree, upon listen, the production is adequate and fitting.
The EP opens with the title track. Beginning with a rather unsettling intro sample, the song enters a mid-tempo segment before resting and moving into the first violent burst of grindcore-infused black metal. High velocity, violent, and ancient feeling black metal, similar to early Blasphemy or demo-era Sarcofago.
The second track, ‘Like Father, Like Son’, clocks in at barely over a minute. This further reinforces the bleak, short, primal narrative of Phallic Flagellation. It is more furious grinding, more languishment, but a small melodic lead in the middle of the violence offers a beacon in the storm.
‘God is Dead, Death is God’, with it’s fitting intro sample, carries the funeral stench of Black Witchery and has a chorus section of chord slabs in the vein of Blasphemy’s ‘Ritual’. The faster front portion of the song is balanced well with a more conventional, slower second half.
‘The Word of the Law’ spills out much as ‘Like Father, Like Son’ did, with the addition of a few barely contained leads. ‘Gilded Coffin’ opens with a roil of double-bass that will clip the speakers of that shitty phone you have in your hand, another ripper that alternates between faster riffs that emphasizes the resolving downbeats and slower chord arrangements to offset. ‘Blasphemous Suicide’ closes this revolting assault.
The updated version contains an outro that is pure noise, low-frequency oscillations, and abrasive free-form audio textures in the vein of power electronics acts such as Genocide Organ or Clinic of Torture. It is essentially the noise that occurs in the heads of the old, sick, and disabled as they lay in hospice beds with nothing to do except die.
Phallic Flagellation is a random severed human limb one comes across while exploring a wooded area. The limb representing the obscure strangeness, detachment, and shock of the music and the wooded area representing the genre of extreme metal as a whole. Take this severed limb home. Enjoy it.
Author Note: This EP arrived to Apanthropy courtesy of NoVisable Scars. NoVisable Scars is a Massachusetts-based label specializing in digital and cassette releases. They have released material from acts such as Abazagorath, Profanatica, Vestal Claret, and One Master. Check them out here.