DADHELO - A Tale of Wildfire
- Year 2017
- Genre GrindcorePunk
- Country NepalUnited States
- Label Holy Goat RecordsNerve Altar
- Rating Excellent
Since releasing their debut EP ‘Lathi Charge’ in August of last year, Chepang has been busy. In addition to putting out a new demo this past April, the band played a blistering set at Maryland Deathfest and was one of the highlights of the festival. For those that are just discovering the group, they’re a Nepalese grindcore/punk band who now call New York home and write politically charged material that has a bit more variety than is typical for the genre. Now the time has come for Chepang’s debut full length ‘DADHELO – A Tale of Wildfire’ and it pushes every aspect of their music forward. Featuring even more variation and unexpected turns than before alongside an all-out attack, these guys know how to make the most of a short run-time and have delivered a debut with plenty of substance.
This album is a wild ride from start to finish, and once you get past that initial chaotic burst of intensity you’ll discover additional depth on quite a few of these tracks
One thing about Chepang that wasn’t obvious to me before I saw them live was that they had two drummers in their lineup. The drums certainly hit hard before, but it feels a little more obvious this time around that there are two of them working in tandem to pummel the listener into submission. There’s plenty of high speed blasting that you’d expect from grind and powerviolence, but the instrumentals also head into a decent amount of slower moments that give off a sludge vibe. ‘Lathi Charge’ hinted at some of this, but it’s been taken to the next level and the slower grooves are more fleshed out and filthy on ‘DADHELO – A Tale of Wildfire’. It’s an intense combination that leaves you unsure of what to expect from each song, as the changes in tempos happen on a regular basis. Compared to a lot of the other groups out there, Chepang seems a bit more riff focused rather than being solely focused on speed and suffocating intensity. Pakheta and Choila are great examples of this, as the riffs pull in some additional hardcore and punk influences and lead into some blistering solos. This album is a wild ride from start to finish, and once you get past that initial chaotic burst of intensity you’ll discover additional depth on quite a few of these tracks.
You’d expect a politically charged grind band to have powerful vocals, but the dual vocal attack that Chepang utilizes feels like it could knock down a brick wall. This is another area where the group is able to deliver a good deal of variation, as they head up and down the high and low ranges. You’ve got extremely low growls that add to the sheer weight of the recording, jagged shrieks and screams that cut like razor wire, and everything in between. ‘DADHELO – A Tale of Wildfire’ also incorporates several different sound clips and interludes that are never easy to predict, and they’re implemented in a way that allows the songs to maintain a seamless flow. The album’s production places both vocalists near the front of the mix, keeping them right in the listener’s face the entire time with little opportunity to breathe.
‘DADHELO – A Tale of Wildfire’ is a natural progression for Chepang, as it takes everything that worked on ‘Lathi Charge’ and the demo and makes it even better. The power of the two drummers comes through clearer, with more variation to the drum patterns, and the riffs have subtle nuances that reveal themselves over repeat listens. It’s grindcore with substance, and that’s a great thing. Crank this one up to max volume and prepare to be beaten to a pulp.