Review: Primitiv – ‘Immortal And Vile’

My initial impression of the debut release from Mumbai’s Primitiv was literally “Phwoar!!!” The first thing that hits you, after a monumental symphonic opener, ‘Clash Of The Gods’, which starts with the opening gravelly spoken line “A desolate landscape, that not a man can live…….”, is the heavy, sexy groove that dominates from the start of ‘World War Zero’. It’s primal, rich, and crushing, hence my reaction. Add to this the vocals, which are deep and gravelly, yet silky smooth, with excellent inflection along with superb clarity, and the overall result is stunning. One of the best vocal deliveries I have heard in quite some time. No surprises that the man behind the voice is India’s vocal legend Nitin Rajan, of Sledge, ex-Reptilian Death, ex-Morticide. The line-up also contains Riju Dasgupta on bass, and Rajarshi Bhattacharya on guitars,  both from India’s hugely popular Heavy Metal outfit Albatross, Blood Meridian drummer Pushkar Joshi,  along with Kiron Kumar, also on guitars, creating a bit of an Indian super group. Certainly the sound attests to as much .

‘Immortal and Vile’ is based on the theme of “The creation of mankind, amidst dominating creatures and its ponderous progression towards damnation.” It has a sound that leans towards old school Death Metal. Tempo wise there is certainly a Doom influence also, but the full package is so much more than that. It’s fresh and exciting. On initial listen, I couldn’t get past first track ‘World War Zero’. I was so blown away, I kept hitting replay. The sinister mix of slow, deliberate, and irresistible dirty repeats, and the stunning vocal delivery, with latter part lead work that builds on the already engrained riff patterns, just kept drawing me back.

‘The Demon Of Science’ has more of a Death Metal leaning, but still a slow to mid pace, with an underlying groove. The sinister spoken element adding a sci-fi slant to the track. Then there’s the punchy ‘Lake Rancid’, with its fluid tempo changes, hypnotic rhythms, lead work, and soaring vocal growls. ‘Dead Man’s Desert’ has a superbly bleak, haunting lead, balanced against dark repeat riffs, all the while permeated by the rich brutal growl of the vocals. ‘Taurus’ gains a very sinister quality from its slow delivery, and for the final offering, ‘Lords Of Primitiv’, the sleazy groove returns. It has a very pronounced old school feel to its construct, more so than its predecessors, enhanced by a sleazy, dirty solo midway.

The eye catching eastern styled artwork, that perfectly completes this excellent package, was done by Scribble Bandit (Rahul Chacko). Primitiv’s ‘Immortal And Vile’ is an album not to be missed, and is available from Transcending Obscurity India.

Review: Jools Green


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