Manipulation is a Goldap, Poland-based deathrash metal group that was formed on September 11th 2001. Goldap is in northeastern Poland. The band introduced itself to the underground heavy metal scene with Live In Kotlownia, which stemmed from 29.11.1003. Promo 2005 came next and again featured the track Maze Of Manipulation. The band appeared on a Carcass covers’ album. It did nothing for the band. The Future Of Immortality was the band’s full-length demo of 2007. It was a concept based on It was re-released by Grimmdistribution/Satanath with new vocals by the band’s latest singer and a new cover artwork in late 2017. The group split up for three years at this stage. With record companies being busy issuing albums by reformed bands only from the 1990s, yet another demo was 2011’s Resurrection. This demo unsurprisingly featured the track Maze Of Manipulation. The band’s 2012 demo was called Passion. Ecstasy was the group’s first work on a record company proper.
MANIPULATION – THE FUTURE OF IMMORTALITY – SATANATH
Here at Metallian Towers we are not fans of re-releases. Let the underground remain the underground is the (correct) thinking. Having said that, Satanath has picked up this ten-year-old demo that has been given newer vocals and artwork and it is quite impressive in its form.
This is brutal and chaotic speedeath and thrash metal enhanced by bestial vocals. The band and label reckon it is pure death metal, but at this end it does seem to nod at the better moments of Malevolent Creation with its extreme death and thrash metal elements. This album is only let down by the clicky bass drums and perhaps the clangy bass sound, but both are audible and omnipresent at the very least.
The record begins with acoustic strumming a la Seasons In The Abyss before drifting into Mystical Manipulation with its licking solo. This songs blasts and grinds. Demand Of Purity alternates between fast and slow, but remains convincing. The slapping bass is prominent. Confession does the same and is haunting during its slower moments. The lead work is delightful and the anxious vocals are animalistic. Sacred Science kicks the album up a notch. It is violent, harsh and cruel. The chants add to the general pandemonium. Loading The Language – note the thematic titles – is up next and the clean chanting and slow parts are interspersed with high gain guitars. The clean vocals become tacky quickly. Doctrine Over Person has a conventional construction and an unfortunate synthesized backdrop perhaps, but the riffs are very good either way. The vocals are again reminiscent of Sylvain House of early Kataklysm. Dispensing Of Existence is a godly song that unleashes a fury upon the listener that does not break even during the melodic guitar parts because the drums surge forward regardless. There are two styles of vocals on this song: screaming and brutalizing growls. The album unmistakably ends on a high note.
The band has not only put effort into the music, but also gone out of its way lyrically. The Future Of Immortality is a concept album based on a book called Thought Reform And The Psychology Of Totalism, which is about… manipulation! The book is a research tome about brainwashing in China by psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton and its chapters correspond to the titles and tracks of this album. Buy the album before the book though. – Ali “The Metallian”
MANIPULATION - MIND CONTROL ULTRA - SATANATH
Instruments Of Change welcomes listeners to Mind Control Ultra. Both heavy and blasting metal with varying growls and screams offer a good mind control start. The song offers brief hints of other less metal influences too. Worshipers Of Mirages expands on the other influences with an atmospheric interlude and industrialized parts that thankfully don't ruin the song. Slaves Of The System blasts its way with a grinding start. The blast beats and more straightforward metal parts make Mind Control Ultra an excellent album. From The Inside follows a similar formula. The variations remain heavy but the speed and grind is superior. The title track, shortened to MK-Ultra, refers to the secret military experiment that was supposedly stopped but has continued and even achieved its goal. Ironically this song spends more time being experimental. Limits is again more straightforward in its execution. Energy Of The Universe showcases the band's attempts in throwing in a few variations while not letting go of the main strength of the album. The Skull With Acid In Eye dares us to enter Room 216. A warning and haunting intro for what follows and what follows is indeed the aforementioned room. Room 216 is described as dirty, hungry and wild where death is guaranteed and those who enter it are reborn "from the black". The band profess their hate for religion as they present an impressive song. Trample The Weak grinds for two minutes and includes an angry heavy section too. R.F.I.D. continues the life control theme. The song surprises with an altered voice clean vocals sections. It comes dangerously close to metalcore. Tale Told By An Idiot is another commentary on humanity. Odd, out of this world pulsing sounds end this mind control system. – Anna Tergel