Well, this certainly is an interesting predicament! I have always wanted to know what Benumb sounds like, and here we are. I wish I could say that I think it is great but … yeah … I don’t think so. I’m just going to get the Premonitions of War stuff out of the way and then we’ll talk about Benumb.
First I’d like to comment on the fact that I think this split is pretty poorly produced. Now, I’m all about some lo-fi grind sometimes, but for metallic grindcore, when the production values are bad things start to sound like mud. Unfortunately, that is what we’ve got here, for both bands too I might add. So it isn’t very helpful that Premonitions of War does the whole techy metal grind thing and you can’t really tell what the hell the guitarists are trying to do because it sounds like a big pile of BLAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!
Benumb is no better. I had heard some older Benumb stuff that I thought was pretty decent, but this is fairly different from that. It sounds like a more redneck version of Spazz. The vocals bring to mind old-school style hardcore bands like Better Than a Thousand and Strife. Why? Why? Why? The music is similar in style to Pig Destroyer or Charles Bronson. If only the vocals sounded like what I remember Benumb sounding like. I’d take Cookie Monster vocals over this.
Anyway, I guess it goes without saying that I wouldn’t recommend this record. I mean if you like 1988-style hardcore and you like grind then maybe this might be okay. I’d be willing to give both these bands another shot. As I stated before, I remember Benumb being a whole lot better than the stuff on this split. Premonitions of War isn’t bad either. If the production on this record was even a little better, providing for some definition, then I’d say there is some promise.