Parasignosis (Profound Lore)
When the temperatures drop, the shivering begins, and the days are more thoroughly consumed by the night, so also does the sickness rise. Walk around and listen: the hacking, the sneezing, the sinus cavities flooded as if one has had a garden hose turned on at full strength for a week. A throat that feels like it passed a cactus. It takes its toll, and our bodies pay the price. We can understand what makes us feel this way, but we can’t see it or predict it. That, partially, is what leads to phobia.
So the parasite, an organism so tiny that its existence is only acknowledged once the scratching begins in the back of the throat, also is mighty. And the way in which Canadian death metal squadron MITOCHONDRION pays homage to the parasite is almost in reverence. A dark, black, twisted tribute that acknowledges these tiny specks of destruction also are more lethal than just what brings on the annual winter’s cold. It can strangle slowly or stab swiftly, with the victim having no recourse other than let the creature run its course and bring with it demise. Taking on Parasignosis — MITOCHONDRION’s second full-length and follow-up to brilliant Archaeaeon — and absorbing the often mangled, drowned words, could make anyone with aforementioned phobias sleep less securely.
The swirling, devastating music is death metal at its core, but it takes the fundamentals to such extreme levels, that it can’t merely take on the label with nothing else said. The primitive terror and danger expressed by country mates WEAPON can be heard here, as can the buried musical brilliance of a band such as PORTAL, but that, also, only gives a miniscule picture. Allowing oneself to be immersed in the music can be compared to having a powerful, sedative drip coursing through the veins in the midst of a great infection, with the mind allowing itself to wander through its deepest, least explored cavities, all the while feeling the sense of dread and panic setting in that no drug possibly can take away. You’ll get caught in the great, charring turbulence the band puts together, all the while waiting for the neck-jerk turns that either lead you to healing or decay.
The first three cuts on Parasignosis, a triptych rife with suffering, sound like the epitome of madness. The drums spiral out of control, yet also keep the morbid time, while the vocals drown and writhe under fairly majestic compositions. By the time the blur of “Tetravirulence” lands, the monstrous doom and charging assault becomes too much to battle on one’s own. Even when “Trials” bubbles out from under the suffocating open, the hammering riffing and bone-powdering tempo still holds the strains of disease, even as other subjects begin to rear their heads. From “Kathenotheism” on through the final three cuts (two are shockingly brief intertwined bits of ambiance), the record shifts more into atmosphere that could be compared to the passing of the body after the disease claims its final victory. The final drops of life are squeezed out, and there remains a fleeting consciousness, but for all intents and purposes, the invisible assailant exerts its power and eats its way to glory.
This is all merely skimming the surface, too, but it’s a start. MITOCHONDRION have managed to make a captivating, terrifying album that goes beyond just what you hear. If you allow yourself to sink into intellectual examination and borderline parasitic worship, you might find your inner insecurities bleeding through. You may unearth fears you never knew you had, or worse, fan the flames of anxiety you try to keep at bay. Aside from what’s said, Parasignosis is a dizzying vortex of crushing superiority, proving that death metal can grow, develop, and be smart, not just sit around like a Neanderthal with limited purpose. MITOCHONDRION are a powerful entity that deserve your utmost respect and attention.