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Italy’s Red Rot is the new extreme metal band of Luciano Lorusso George and Davide Tiso, formerly of Ephel Duath, and their debut Mal de Vivre, is a relentless opus of technical beauty and bludgeoning grace.
Dubbed after a French expression to describe a sense of profound discontentment, the idea of losing the taste for life, Red Rot’s Mal de Vivre was written, recorded and mixed between October 2020 and May 2021 as the world was reeling in the throes of pandemic. Featuring eclectic drummer Ron Bertrand and bass virtuoso Ian Baker to flesh out their powerhouse of cutting-edge extreme metal, Red Rot are an emerging force to be reckoned with.
The seventeen songs in Mal de Vivre are musically intense, raw and passionate, but with a multi-faceted elegance that envisages Red Rot appealing to fans of radical and heavy music right across the spectrum. Engorged with elements of Death Metal, Doom and Thrash: Mal de Vivre sounds like a twisted blend of the roots of early Morbid Angel and Paradise Lost with the experimental discord of Voivod and the hardcore clash and klang of bands like Converge. Lorusso’s lyrics on Mal de Vivre explore themes of mental illness, psychological deviance, rage, gloom and paranoia, all delivered with agonized and emotional conviction.
Clocking in at the perfect 38 minute mark, the songs on Red Rot’s Mal de Vivre alternate between one minute bursts and three minute nightmares resulting in a fervent but cathartic listening experience.
That Mal de Vivre is such a well developed and conceived debut album should be no surprise to fans of Tiso and Lorusso’s earlier work, but newcomers to Red Rot’s fungal network of dominating putrefaction have oozing spoils to savor once this album drops.