New Jersey’s Replicant Dream Of Electric Sheep


Weird death is back. “But Edward” you say, shivering, swaddled tightly in your grandmother’s favorite wool blanket, “we thought it never left?”

Dissonant death metal is a much beloved and as often maligned subgenre in extreme music. Many heavy metal fans hail it as the future and the next step in the logical evolution of heavy metal, just as those fans are met with cries of “that’s not real metal” and “hahahahahaha what the fuck did I just listen to.” The veritable explosion of the subgenre has produced a significant number of talented bands. Enter New Jersey’s Replicant, who are hoping to climb to the top of the pile with their new release, Worthless Desires.


A replicant.

New Jersey's Replicant.

New Jersey’s Replicant.


Replicant is a new band, formed in 2014 and sharing members with New Jersey’s Dystrophy. As of now I can only assume they’ve drawn their name from Ridley Scott’s unfuckwithable Blade Runner, and their debut release is a similarly gritty, dystopian experience. Worthless Desires is a four track, fourteen minute monster of a record.

replicantworthlessdesiresThe obvious touchstones for Worthless Desires are several moments from the career of Gorguts. If you have even a passing interest in extreme metal, or read and follow this site routinely, you should already be familiar with them. At various moments throughout Worthless Desires, elements of Obscura, From Wisdom To Hate, and Colored Sands are heard. That’s not to say Replicant is simply aping Gorguts’ catalog, but Gorguts are definitely the most direct influence. There are even vocal similarities, deep and powerful screams in the same vein as Luc Lemay. I digress from Metal Injection’s Austin Weber who cited similarities to spazz-death champions Pyrrhon, as little from Worthless Desires reminds me of Pyrrhon’s last several releases.

With such a brief runtime, Worthless Desires wastes no time with frilly introductions, instead choosing to pummel the listener right from its opening moments. The production strikes the right balance between clarity and oppression; each instruments is given a huge sound. “Ripped From Within” features steady riffs ending in sideways squalls; forceful, consistent drumming keeps the song marching forward. “Shroud” is where the weird death label really starts to apply, with more guitar squealing, increasingly chaotic drumming, and frequent tempo changes all abound. The next two tracks, “The Ever Dying Realm” and “Anti-Instinct – The Withered End” follow suit – “Anti-Instinct” features both the album’s fastest playing and its slowest crawl.

Much like the last EP I reviewed here, Worthless Desires is an impressive collection of tracks, but again, I’m left wanting more. The short length makes it easy to listen to these songs over and over, as you might find yourself doing after hearing this for the first time. As a debut, it introduces us to Replicant’s brand of dissonant death metal; the strong Gorguts influence does not detract anything from these newcomers. Replicant is definitely a band to watch for until we build off-world colonies in 2019. As such, I award this album:

4 / 5 Flaming Toilets ov Hell


Worthless Desires is out now on CD, Spotify, and Bandcamp, on PRC Music.

h/t to the artist formerly known as Jack Bauer.

Cover image via. Image via.

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  • YES

  • looking forward to 2019

  • I will def check this out, Ed. Thanks for sharing your words.

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™

      It had been too long, young Link.

      • Edward/Breegrodamus™

        Coincided with the release of Dark Souls III, now that I think about it.

        • you made the right choices

          • Edward/Breegrodamus™

            Started a Caestus run last night – should be tricky.

          • -Aniken Skywalker

          • caestus and all the fist weaps are way worse than two.

            you will certainly have a hard run

          • Edward/Breegrodamus™

            The Demon’s Fist is pretty ill, but the range is so short.

            I wouldn’t mind experimenting with the Dark Hand at some point.

            I’ve tried a mage run and I’m still tooling around the High Wall of Lothric, my mage skills are not strong in III.

          • CT-12

            Been meaning to show you these 2 bands (if you haven’t already listened to them before), something in both I think you’d dig.

          • CT-12
          • my pure sorc build is FIRE, Ed. its real weak early game, real strong late game.

            the dark hand is dope (0 weight, 100% phys block) but it has no parry. and the special move is near impossible to land

  • Janitor Jim Duggan

    Did someone mention weird death? I’ll give these guys a listen.

    • Stanley

      Edward did.

  • Dubs

    The Gorguts is strong with this EP, but I dig!

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™

      Really strong, so much so that it’s easy to dismiss other comparisons I’ve seen.

      • Dubs

        Yah, the Pyrrhon one is a streeeeetch.

        • Edward/Breegrodamus™

          Lol, yeah. I don’t think they sound too similar.

          I’m not too familiar with Ripping Corpse, so I can’t pinpoint the veracity of said claim. Perhaps I’ll give them a spin today!

          Human Remains, also not so much.

          • Yep, they don’t sound like Ripping Corpse either. And I’ve heard shades of Human Remains in a couple bands, but nothing comparable.

  • Joaquin Stick

    This is not my usual thing, but I am enjoying it more than I usually do. This style does seem to be the current apex predator of extreme metal.

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™

      That is a really interesting topic for discussion: is dissonant death metal the apex predator of extreme metal subgenres?

      I listen to more black metal than death metal, but I do get in my weird death bands when I can.

      • RepostedAvengedSevenfoldFan2

        Why so many bands of this shit.?

        -paulo cunha, 2 months ago

      • Joaquin Stick

        I am certainly not the right person to answer that question since I don’t really follow most extreme metal, but as an outsider it does seem to be portrayed that way.

      • I’d say its a battle between dissonant and cavernous right now.

        • Edward/Breegrodamus™

          Oh yeah, cavernous death metal is huge right now.

          • Then you have bands like Abyssal that combine the two.

          • i dunno what a person calls Abyssal riffs, but i call them genius!

  • Eliza

    So far, I’m loving this album. Also, all the references to Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep get 10/10.

  • Peter Lloyd

    Thanks for the sweet writeup Edward – much respect!

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™

      Keep up the good work Peter – looking forward to the next release!

  • Stockhausen


    These guys are great!

    • Hubert

      You read me like a book Stockhausen.

      • Dubs

        I’d say you’re more of a highbrow periodical than a book.

  • BobLoblaw

    Its like they’re filling in the gap in Gorguts releases retroactively. Is that a compliment?

    • Eliza

      Of course.

      • BobLoblaw

        They’re both filling in the metal releases Dmitri never had.

        • Eliza

          Some of the most metal music that is not actually metal out there.

          • BobLoblaw

            Prokofiev got pretty brutal too.

          • Edward/Breegrodamus™

            Wovenhand always struck me as a brutal band.

          • BobLoblaw

            A cursory look into them and i can see it.

  • Fanfuckintastic review, Ed. Musssssst Lissssssssten.

  • I also can’t read the MI write up because it’s buried underneath a pile of dingus ads.

    • You’re missing the eloquent wordplay of modern literary genius, Andrew Webber.

      • Edward/Breegrodamus™

        This is a real sentence on there:

        While the four horrific songs on Worthless Desire definitely
        reflect an older Gorguts influence, there is also a prominent dimension
        of old school death metal prominent throughout in a Ripping Corpse and
        other older death metal gods of old sort of way who inspired this as
        Replicant themselves told me.

        • Joaquin Stick


        • That was difficult to get through.

        • I am dizzy now, thank you.

        • EsusMoose

          Reading that gave me a feeling like I just lost my sense of balance, I’m gonna sit and take a breather.

        • *vapes*

        • Older era Gorguts would relate to the first two albums. If the band says they are influenced by Ripping Corpse then you take them at their word.

          • Edward/Breegrodamus™

            I don’t disagree at all about letting a band speak to their influences, just, look at that sentence.

          • It’s prominent

          • Edward/Breegrodamus™

            My JAM.

        • Did someone tell him he needs to go to the hospital? Because he definitely had a stroke about 1/3 of the way through typing that.

        • Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow

          You sure that wasn’t Swissgar who wrote that?

      • Andrew Lloyd Webber is so highly underrated.

      • I really hate him and now I see him everywhere. At least his TDT clone is 95% of the time shit.

      • Damnit, I was really hoping to draw some insipiration here, but all I could see was an ad for The Top 10 Celebs that got fat.

  • Count_Breznak

    It was the future about 3 years ago….there is quite the selection of bands playing in that style now, and sadly most don’t add anything new to the mix. The vocalist here does his best Steeve Hurdle impression, the riffs are weird..but the drumming feels monotonous, and they are never really picking up speed. It’s not a bad album, nice not-grindcore area Napalm Death influences in the 2nd song and a bit of Sulaco here and there..but not very momorable, either.

  • Elegant Gazing Globe

    this is surprisingly listenable for me.

  • Elegant Gazing Globe

    I think I like this because it’s not all octaves and 5th and 3rd chords that I’m used to hearing

  • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff


  • Ayreonaut


  • /skronked

  • CT-12

    This is pretty sick stuff Ed; sometimes it can take a little bit for me to get in the right headspace to listen to this music, but this clicked with me right off the bat. Extremely well crafted, thanks for sharing.

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™


      • CT-12


  • tertius_decimus

    It seems like skronk goes the same route as any other subgenre: pioneers go first, who wait for their time for who knows how long, then their unique shtick suddenly becomes a “thing” and finally we get oversaturation on the scene by dozens of bands aping the shtick at maximum, not trying hard enough to place their very own thing into equation. This view by the way crosses with what Lacertillian have said about Bedowyn couple of posts back. I love Gorguts deeply, Ulcerate as well… But it’d be a deep abyss before Gorguts-esque influence will grow into something bigger than 796th aping cover band in the row. Do you remember when everyone was yawning at new death metal bands? Yep, Gorguts were among them: bland, uninspiring, nothing interesting or exciting… until Obscura. Now, let’s wait for new pioneer, who’ll be using current state of skronk as a base for his new, unique shtick that no one has invented before.

    Until then… lisen to the original, new Gorguts.

  • Waynecro

    Awesome review, man! I’m digging Replicant. Thanks!

  • Señor Jefe El Rosa

    Blade Runner>>>>>>>>>>

    • Edward/Breegrodamus™

      So many arrows.

      • Señor Jefe El Rosa

        I didn’t even include most of them.