It seems like 2016 may be the year of the grind comeback. Earlier this February Brooklyn’s Magrudergrind returned with a soul-wrecking new album, II, and now one of metal’s most extreme genres is getting another return in Sweden’s Gadget. It has been six years since Gadget released any music at all, giving fans a split album with fellow grindcore band, Phobia, in 2010. Prior to that split, it was another four years when they released their last full-length album, The Funeral March. Needless to say, the Gävle natives were due for some new music and they delivered with The Great Destroyer.
Gadget has not missed a step during their absence. The Great Destroyer does what the album title suggests. It is seventeen songs of unadulterated, hyper-aggressive grind destruction. Gadget takes a bit of a different approach to their grind formula than say Magrudergrind or even NAILS (to use more modern and recent bands) who infuse powerviolence into their sound. The Swedes instead take more of a death metal approach in grind fusion. It suits them well and it is executed with incredible technical precision.
As with most grind albums, the songs come quick and brash. With the exception of the monster of a final track, “I Don’t Need You/Dead and Gone”, the songs run less than one or two minutes. Standout tracks like “Pillars of Filth” and “From Graduation to Devastation” showcase Gadget’s supra-grind influences like death metal as well as touches of sludge and doom. The inclusion of these additional style elements allows the album to maintain a similar holistic structure as grind’s precedents suggest, while allowing for brief moments between or during songs to catch your breath. This prevents the album from being considered overwhelming or suffocating and makes The Great Destroyer such a memorable album.
It is a welcomed return for Gadget. In a busy first three months of 2016, grind has and will see numerous releases. In this wave of venom, the Swedish quartet stands out against many other bands’ efforts. The Great Destroyer is a culmination of nearly twenty years of experience and veteran mentality. With exceptionally tight and precise instrumentation from William Blackmon and company, Gadget triumphantly roars again in 2016.