It has been some time since F.A.M. (Furor Arma Ministrat) last released a full length. After a promising EP and full length in 2006 and 2007, the Polish death/grind band fell silent for a number of years. A three way split with Nuclear Vomit and Grindbashers gave a small glimpse of new material, and now the band has finally returned with their sophomore full length ‘Human Cargo’ which will release September 3rd on Deformeathing Production. There have been some lineup changes between 2007’s ‘Bullet(in)’ and ‘Human Cargo’, but they’ve been able to return with a truly monstrous record that captures every element one could want from death/grind. Today we’re premiering the song Lets share a cigarette which is a two minute burst that’s sure to appeal to fans of bands like Napalm Death, Nasum, and Carcass.
As you might expect from a group playing this mix, there is very little room to breathe for the two minutes that this song runs for. Right from the start the instrumentals are already an intense blast of down-tuned guitars and pounding drums that create a whirlwind sound ready to send you careening headfirst into a brick wall. But what I like about F.A.M. is how well they straddle the line between brutal death metal and grindcore, and this song is a perfect example of that. Lets share a cigarette faster riffing is reminiscent of the type of bottom heavy attack Napalm Death has been utilizing for the last decade or so, but there are some well-timed breaks where the instrumentals slow things down into chugging brutal death metal territory. It’s a perfect way to break things up within the confines of this fairly short song, and gives the band a bit more versatile sound than some of the other death metal leaning grind bands that just fly along at full speed for an entire album. Plus it certainly helps that ‘Human Cargo’ as a whole has rock solid production values, making each drum blast and riff hit extremely hard.
Vocalist Zajcew’s performance is another reason that F.A.M. is able to perfectly transition from straight-up grind into brutal death territory. Early on his pitch skews towards lower growls and gruff screaming that’s similar to a lot of the other European grind bands out there, but it’s delivered with precision and helps to fill out the bottom end of the sound. But at around the 45 second mark he switches over to an extremely distorted pig squeal that ties in well with the brutal death metal transition the guitars and bass head into at this point. Even when switching between these two low ranges there’s no loss of intensity and it’s a fairly seamless changeover, allowing the band to tap into those guttural brutal death ranges that could make them very appealing to that audience.
‘Human Cargo’ is a great comeback from F.A.M., and if this song grabs your attention then you’ll want to grab the album when it releases on September 3rd. Coming in at 32 and a half minutes, these guys are good at concise attacks that switch things over from the death metal to grind sides of the spectrum to keep things interesting. Plus there’s a cover of My Dying Bride’s All Swepts Away which is a very interesting take on the track! Poland has a history of spawning killer grind, and these guys are no exception.