Beneath the Massacre Talk the Slow Road to 'Incongruous'
Published Feb 24, 2012Montreal technical death metal band Beneath the Massacre have returned with their latest album, the long-awaited Incongruous. The group's third full-length comes four years following the release of their bone-crushing Dystopia, and although their 2010 EP Marée Noire whetted appetites, vocalist Elliot Desgagnés explains why the new record took so long and why it was well-worth the wait.
Having released 2008's Dystopia just a year after their debut, Mechanics of Dysfunction, Desgagnés says it was a timeframe they won't use again because it was not conducive to quality songwriting.
"The time we took to write Dystopia was not enough. We were touring at the same time and it was little bit too much," he tells Exclaim! "I was a little disappointed [with Dystopia] to be honest. Half of the album is awesome and the other half just felt like, 'Ugh, we needed to step it up a little,' in my opinion. Maybe the band would disagree with that, but that's the way I was feeling."
Desgagnés explains that they wanted to take their time to create Incongruous, especially now that they've slowed down in recent years.
"We used to tour like 200 days a year and now we're taking more time in the studio, which is also our practice room. We spend more time with the material, with the music and with the art, rather than just writing a new album for whoever and then start touring, promote the old album while writing the new album and then releasing that album, that whole spiral thing.
"Now we take it a little easier and try to write the best damn songs we can and I think we nailed it. The Marée Noire EP, in my opinion, was one of the best things we did, and now Incongruous is by far, there's no doubt for me, the best album we've written so far. So I think that's going to be the way we keep on going from now on. No more touring 200 days a year, and more working in the studio with our instruments."
The result is Beneath the Massacre's most dynamic an masterful record to date. Incongruous features the brutal, technical and overtly complicated songwriting that the band have perfected over their seven-year career, but it also includes much more range, with diverse rhythms and song structures. Desgagnés says it's an extremely demanding record on the musicians.
"We're still trying to nail the songs live because they're really, really fucking hard to play," he laughs. "As a technical band, we need to stay relevant somehow, we can't be writing the same album. We're always staying Beneath the Massacre, but the bottom line is that for this one, we really wanted to drop jaws, technicality-wise and aggressive-wise. These are some of the most difficult songs we've ever written."
However, Desgagnés maintains that the band will continue to write elaborate, technical death metal, despite the music's level of difficulty, because it's what they enjoy most.
"We're grownups, we have other responsibilities, so we don't get together and play music if it's going to be easy and boring to play; it has to be a challenge," he says. "Sometimes we have to stop and rethink a part of a song and figure out how we can make it work, or sound better, and we try to perfect it. That's fun for us, that's the whole thing."
Incongruous is out now via Prosthetic Records.