FLESH FOR THE BEAST Quality song-writing and quality death metal need not be mutually exclusive. Squarely placed in the same pool of blood spilled by previous genre greats like Deicide, Cannibal Corpse, and Obituary, Flesh for the Beast exudes a ferocious craving for violence totally lacking in the majority of modern death metal today. Crafting music every bit as gripping as it is brutal, Flesh for the Beast embed themselves like a pickaxe to the skull with every fiery lead, every massive groove, every spurt-of-blood solo. Put simply, this is the classic bloodlust and mayhem of the Florida Death Metal Scene reimagined and reinvented for the new millennium. Originally Sadomasochism, Flesh for the Beast has since morphed from this original moniker into an unavoidable and frightening presence in the Grand Rapids, Michigan metal scene. While most of their peers are content to play much more mainstream styles of metal, Flesh have taken a darker path and carved a viscera-drenched niche no other band in the area can wrest from them. This dedication to old-fashioned death metal sees the band emerge with the homicidal grooves of Gorefest, the maliciously ripping riffs of Cannibal Corpse, and the diabolical fret-work popularized by Morbid Angel. Capped off by unnerving mental visions in the demonic vein of Deicide, Flesh for the Beast will strangle listeners with their suffocating, vicious metal and evoke hallucinogenic flashbacks to The Bleeding or Altars of Madness. Such passion and drive has not gone unnoticed; Flesh has topped numerous “best of lists” in local contests and has frequently placed in the upper-echelons of WKLQ’s Battle of the Bands. Having placed in the semi-finals or better every year since the competition’s inception in 2001 (in which they won as Sadomasochism), Flesh earns their rabid fanbase no-doubt from their maniacal live-shows. Mixing top-notch performances from the entire unit with esoteric smoke and intricate lighting, the F4TB live show is every bit as jarring a spectacle as it is an entertaining one. Having shared the stage with the likes of Watain, Angelcorpse, Cannibal Corpse, Krisiun, Six Feet Under, and Goatwhore to name just a few, F4TB have more experience eviscerating and disemboweling unfortunate victims than a clique of serial-killer surgeons. With 2007’s Scavengers of the Damned out now, F4TB has considerably brought things to even more obscene highs; a whirling storm of blood-and-guts, Scavengers is a filthy masterpiece perfectly fit for an era startlingly devoid of quality death metal. This towering holocaust of berserker frenzy is not to be missed---after all, beneath the buckets of blood, this disc flies the flag for old-fashioned death metal that hasn’t been seen in a decade or two.