Some bands exhibit such a raw and unbridled ferocity that upon first listen, you’re completely enthralled by their metallic supremacy. Such is the case with Texas’ extreme metal maniacs Steel Bearing Hand. From the moment that Slay In Hell is unleashed on your ears, you will become demonically possessed by their brand of thrashing death metal. Take one look at the incredibly detailed and brutal cover art by VRUGARTHDOOM and you know that you’re in for a treat with this 6-song metal opus.
Taking their name from a Celtic Frost lyric, the four miscreants of Steel Bearing Hand have crawled from the darkest bowels of the Texas underground to carve their bloody mark on an oversaturated metal scene. This isn’t to say that SBH sound like Celtic Frost or are trying to ape the masters; SBH have forged their own sound from differing classic extreme metal influences. This is Steel Bearing Hand’s second opus and you can taste the steel and violence throughout Slay In Hell‘s 6 songs of brutal and catchy insanity. The production is is huge and heavy and captures the might of the band’s fury.
Even though Slay In Hell was recorded in 2019, its taken Steel Bearing Hand a few years to unleash their opus on this plane of existence and it was more than worth the wait. The first feral track “Command of the Infernal Exarch” is a brutal statement of intent that’s reminiscent of Australian war-metallers Destroyer 666, with a twin guitar attack in the Maiden-vein. Next is “Lich Gate” (not to be confused with British avant-metal band Lychgate reviewed here last year) which keeps the pedal to the floor for some more glorious aural insanity. The third track “Tombspawn” is an instrumental that slows the mania down a touch for a more doom-metal approach and it thunders forth a bit like a Bolt Thrower tune. The album closer “Ensaguined” is then an epic 12-minute extreme journey into death thrash territory with more hints of Bolt Thrower. It shifts gears a few times and crawls along at moments with a death-doom chug.
In the COVID-era this world needs the unfettered awesomeness of Steel Bearing Hand and this album is sure to garner the accolades of many scribes throughout the globe…..and this quartet deserves all the praise that they get. Slay In Hell is top notch insanity and a perfect soundtrack to herald our world’s decent into the abyss. 9/10
Steel Bearing Hand’s Slay In Hell was released on April 2nd 2021 via Carbonized Records.