Grab – The Inevitable Filth of Mankind (Review)

Grab The Inevitable Filth Of Mankind

For some time now, there has been quite a select but very talented cast of characters that have been making the Greek black metal scene truly something to behold from all angles no matter if you’re tackling it as a purveyor of the old school or an innovator of the new teachings. We could be here for hours and talk about what many of those musicians have been doing for decades now from the absolute menagerie of bands that they’ve made in their wake with leagues of albums between them all, but if there is one classic name that hasn’t been getting the attention it’s been deserving for one reason or another, it has to be Grab. Featuring members from well-established Greek black metal acts like Dødsferd and Imperium Infernalis, it should be clear right out of the gate that Grab is not here to f*ck around with the albums that they’ve put out always keeping that old dark flame alive on a scale that other bands of the style wish they could execute with such mastery, further adding to the glory that is on full display in this band’s unyielding performance. However, it’s with their latest effort that Grab has reached an all-new peak the likes of which one can only help but bow down before as its darkness washes over all.

If we were to time travel and throw this record into the stores selling underground releases and into the tape-swapping circles that extreme metal found itself in during the 80s and 90s, it is with the insertion of “The Inevitable Filth of Mankind” that Grab would instantly take hold amongst the bands at the time for this is a record that derives directly from those ancient days of the style so exquisitely that it’s downright staggering. This isn’t another cookie-cutter old school record that feels like a hollow shell of a greater sound, but, rather, a beyond-faithful recreation that embodies everything that classic black metal has been since day one. It’s right down to the very production of these six tracks that Grab delivers a performance that speaks volumes to the talent and ingenuity behind every single band member here for the cohesion of a modern mindset paired with a deep love for that original sound topped off by the glorious knowledge of how to bring it all together. Just a misstep would be enough for us to see Grab travel down a path far less glorious than the one they’ve trodded for this magnificent release, but it’s at every step of the way that we’re shown Grab is not only confident in each foot they put forward but also that they plan each one well before they even move forth.

Where far too many bands leave their reverence for the old school at a somewhat lo-fi performance combined with songwriting that can feel like the very definition of monotone (and thus, boring), it’s right out of the gate here that Grab prove themselves to be far above such a pitfall. Albeit not as outwardly blasphemous as some of their previous efforts, “The Inevitable Filth of Mankind” is a true black metal record like few others out there from the songwriting to the bleak mindset that constantly overshadows the whole of the tape to the glorious variety from one song to the next when it comes to the speed, composition, and outward projections of raw power to the vocal performances that fluctuate excellently from one minute to the next to make for a surprising dynamic performance. Smash it all together, and we get a performance that easily could be mistaken to have been made in 1992 with how stupendously it adheres to that classic sound while still allowing Grab’s personality to bleed through every second, making the record all their own. That adds even more to the wonder that is “The Inevitable Filth of Mankind” with every layer seeming to play ever further into the grandeur that’s at play here such that is there any possible way one could not help but become enamored with the darkness that is being woven throughout every minute of this performance?

While it is with their black metal scene that Greece may not be particularly known for throughout the world of metal, those of us who keep an eye on it know exactly what kind of gold mine it is. Grab is just one name of many that’s worthy of many more accolades, but it is single-handedly with “The Inevitable Filth of Mankind” that we see the potential of this band taken to an extreme out of seemingly nowhere. And it’s with all the power and talent that drowns every second of this effort that I dare any proper fan of black metal to turn it away without having to force themselves to do so.

You can listen to “The Inevitable Filth of Mankind” on Bandcamp here, and listen to the title track via YouTube below.

Track Listing:
1. Standing Breathless From A Structured Space
2. The Inevitable Filth of Mankind
3. A Hollow Figure From the Past
4. Altar of Revenge
5. Evil Unbound
6. Our Star of Chaos Shines Supreme