Debut EPs rarely tend to be that standout. Most of the time, it will just present a band's core sound, as if to say “here is what we are capable of,” and then abruptly end. They almost never wind up being good albums in their own right. They often act as barometers, telling us what to expect in the future. As for Human Sculpture's debut EP Our World / Torn Down...well, that's actually exactly what this album is like.
That is not to say that it's bad, mind you. Human Sculpture are a true, classic death metal band, their sound blending traditional death metal with heavy thrash elements in the style of genre progenitors Death. In addition to that, however, there are also clear influences from the modern djent movement in their occasional use of rhyhtm-focused monotone riffs and bass-heavy guitar tones. This hints at influences from modern artists like TesseracT and Gojira. There are also a few moments that point to influences from the more technical end of the spectrum, flirting with Atheist and early Cynic.
Though all of the pieces on this EP are pretty solid, “Deconstruction” stands out amongst the others. The juxtaposition of the brutally growled vocals alongside the surprisingly melodic riffwork is intense and groovy; I found my self doing the 'side-bob-in-your-chair' manoeuvre more times than I care to admit while listening to this track. “The Wait” is the only piece of the three I felt dragged on just a bit too long. Toward the last minute or so of the song, I really felt like the band had used all of their ideas and were just beating the piece into the ground. This isn't to say it was a bad song—it wasn’t—just that it was a bit repetitive.
Our World / Torn Down overall is really quite an enjoyable piece of brutal death metal. Human Sculpture are not ground-breaking, but what they lack in freshness they make up with sheer power. They're an enjoyable band, and their introductory EP is a fine addition to any death metal collection. That being said, if you chose to skip this one, you're not exactly missing much. If you live, breathe, and do your taxes while listening to Morbid Angel, then this album will be some welcome spice to your undoubtedly ginormous death metal collection. If you're highly selective about your music, you won't find anything on this EP you haven't heard before. If you only listen to top 40 tunes and take the oath on a copy of Like a Virgin, why did you read this review?
4.5 / 10
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