While on the cusp of it, extreme metal may come with its fair share of limitations - when doubled down on the reward is often worth the risk. And that's the most poignant description you could possibly hand to Monasteries latest haymaker of an EP Pulmonary Failure (possibly the most metal name for an EP in the history of music).
Confined to a post-it note, Pulmonary Failure is little more than a 20 minute slaughterhouse of beatdown annihilation. But the EP deserves more credit than this rather simplistic stamp. Here we have a record that does much more than just try to beat its predecessors BPM.
There's a structured finesse pulsing through the veins of Pulmonary Failure that may catch you off guard. 'Oxygen Debt' and 'Force Fed' are the furious, bull in a china shop tracks that look to incinerate everything in their path, but it's 'Larsen Trap' that truly shows the potential Monasteries withhold.
Up to this point the EP will have admittedly kicked your teeth out with its barrage of blast beats, vocal rips, and riff assaults, but 'Larsen Trap' takes the songwriting up a gear. The seamless transitions between deathcore, hardcore, tech, and even at times straight up metal are brutal yet fascinating. Monasteries manage to put an almost anthemic spin on some of the heaviest gut punches you'll have heard all year. It's a bizarre level of creativity to have when you consider that this is a band still in their mid Twenties.
The fact is though, you don't need to sit and pick apart this five track behemoth to get the most out of it. Pulmonary Failure ticks almost every box on your proverbial deathcore checklist. Guitarists Ben Standley and Aaron Wright knock out frankly absurd riffs throughout, but most notably on 'Baphomet Eyes', while vocalist Josh Davies puts in an utterly hellish performance from start to finish. Whatever you're looking for in your extreme metal - you will find it somewhere within this EP.
You'll go into Pulmonary Failure salivating for the Monasteries' coarse breakdowns and all round aggressive nature, and so you should - that's what the quintet are best at. But look a little further under the surface and you discover a band that are much more fine tuned than your average extreme metal bruisers. When this EP reaches the masses, it's hard to envisage a world where Monasteries' stock doesn't rise.