Track By Track: TWITCH OF THE DEATH NERVE - Beset by False Prophets (2021)

1. The Wages of Faith:

Our last album was released in March 2020, and with the onset of Covid 19 we found all our gigs cancelled and so had no way to promote the release. We decided to use the time productively and work on some new tracks for an EP, as well as producing some video content. Mauro already had some drum patterns written, so they formed the basis of the new material. The Wages of Faith was the first song we put together and it's one of the fastest and most relentless we’ve recorded to date, channelling the Colombian Brutal Death Metal influences that Mauro brought to the band. The middle section has a slightly different vibe than you’d normally find in BDM, with even a touch of Black Metal influence showing through, but then you’re plunged straight back into the brutality. Lyrically the track disputes the argument that even if you doubt the veracity of religion, it can still be seen as a positive or harmless force in people’s lives. It covers religious and spiritual belief peddling false hope and undermining the medical and scientific advances that can genuinely help people. It also refers to the fact that some religious organisations amass vast wealth that could actually be used to make a difference in the world but instead it is stockpiled or spent on proselytising. The track kicks off with a really bleak sample of a father disavowing the doctors treating his wife for cancer and instead scolding his son to turn to prayer for help, taken from the film "The Devil all the Time".

2. Facadism:

The second new track on the EP relies less on all out speed and brutality, and starts with some more old school riffs. There are also more catchy parts in this track which hopefully gives another dimension and some variety to the release. The middle breakdown section is something we’re looking forward to playing live and shows some NYDM influences. The lyrics discuss how large multinational corporations that once began with a vision or an ideal, turn into soulless machines consuming people as fuel.

3. At the Trial of the Exhumed Pope:

This track is a big departure from our usual style and drops the tempo right down for the majority of the song. A lot of inspiration was taken from middle-period Cannibal Corpse albums that would often feature a slow/mid-paced track with a different vibe to the rest of their material. The unsettling sample at the beginning was created with the help of jazz musician John Pope who downtuned a double bass as low as it would go and subjected it to various abuses. It was inspired by the work of experimental composer Giacinto Scelsi. The lyrics are about the strange story of Pope Formosus whose remains were exhumed and put on trial by his bitter successor in the “Cadaver Synod”. More generally it is an allegory about narcissism and being driven by blind vengeance, something that resonates with modern politics. The sample in the middle is taken from an audiobook of ‘The Ring and The Book’ by Robert Browning which also covered the cadaver synod.

4. Confounded by Apophenia:

This release was originally conceived as a 3 track EP and this song was intended to be part of “At the Trial of the Exhumed Pope”, with the speed picking up for the second half. In the end, the tempo change was too severe and we couldn't get it to sound natural, so we left it as two separate tracks and created “Confounded by Apophenia” as a standalone piece. Along with the first track, this served to bookend this section of the EP with the most fast and brutal material. The lyrics discuss apophenia and the human predisposition to spot patterns which may not always hold significant meaning. In this context it manifests in people taking threads of information and weaving them into conspiracy theories, driven by an attraction to a certain type of narrative rather than any attempt to interrogate and piece together the available evidence. The worldview of a growing number of people has become comparable to a religion in that it is largely faith based, with "facts" being cherry picked to support a pre-existing belief.

5-14. BONUS TRACKS - Live at Xxxapada Na Tromba fest:

The Xxxapada Na Tromba set was recorded in January 2020 and was our last show before the pandemic shut things down. The recording was made by Dominik from DPK Studios/Stillbirth and we mixed it ourselves and used it for a live video of our set. We had so much positive feedback about the audio, with some people preferring the raw sound to the albums, that we decided to add it as a bonus section to the Beset EP. We were really happy with our performance at this gig, and it feels like the culmination of this new phase of the band with Mauro joining permanently on drums and completing a full line-up for the first time.

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