Finland's Arrestum was founded in 2007, and they've made a demo and two EPs since - and I haven't heard any of them. This is the band's newest EP and their first 7"-release.
The opener is a brisk crust-piece with the lead guitars delivering some heavy/speed metal-influenced passages, japan-style. They bring a nice contrast to the otherwise somewhat damp and bassy soundscape and the low and gruff shouted vocals. "Viha" follows after an almost jamming mid-tempo bridge, and continues in a similar vein; brisk crust with some d-beat and hardcore, and very pleasing and surprising rhythms in the riffs. The guitar leads provide an excellent and original-sounding add to the otherwise bleak and dark compositions, and make the songs less easy to digest during the initial listens - and I mean this as a good thing.
The B-side's six-minuter continues in a somewhat similar style, but executes it way darker and bleaker, almost in a depressed manner. It builds slowly into a steady crust-piece, after which it unleashes a bleak instrumental passage with nicely piercing guitar leads that deliver the song to its finish. Very stylish.
The lyrics are even darker than the music, and they grudgingly criticise religious and social norms and commandments, coldness of human emotion, and the lack of empathy in the modern world. It's surprising to notice the style with which these different themes are mixed in the lyrics into one dark blend of mental anguish and frustration.
As the music and lyrics, the dark ages-themed visual side is commendable and done with a great sense of style as well. I would've wanted a bit more bolder originality from the riffs and a soundscape in which the instruments would have more to breathe in, but other than that there's very little to complain about. "Ihmistieteet" presents a great slab of desperate crust to darken your summer days. I'm curious to hear what Arrestum comes up with next.