Split Premiere: Bog Body & Primitive Warfare

After forming in 2016, New York-based guitarless death/sludge heavies Bog Body went on to release one of, if not the heaviest demo of 2018. The following year, another duo, this time from South Carolina, calling themselves Primitive Warfare put out one of the meanest demonstrations of aural hostility heard that year. Now the two forces have combined to release a split album perfect for ringing in the end of times. 

The Gate of Grief / Undulating Torment

Out today on 12″ vinyl, The Gate of Grief / Undulating Torment is available from Stygian Black Hand. Read below to find out from the bands themselves the full context and story behind this incredibly harmful new split.


This is your first recording since your demo. What made you want to make it a split with Primitive Warfare?
Duality is an important aspect in life and something we explore in our music. To approach a split as a sum of two parts was invigorating. To this end, Primitive Warfare made perfect sense. They’re comrades of ours, we’ve shared shows with them and the whole effort fits well under the banner of Stygian Black Hand; a label we’re intimately familiar with. We feel very akin to them, despite obvious differences, the intensity is shared and we knew they would react favorably to a split with a focus.

What information can you provide regarding the recording of your side? With whom did you record and where?
We recorded The Gate of Grief in the same space we recorded Through the Burial Bog. It’s a freezing cold and dark concrete room with ugly wood floors soaked in alcohol and a lone light bulb. Once again we enlisted Nolan Voss to record and mix. His finger was on the pulse and the experience was smooth. Nolan captured everything perfectly and implemented some interesting techniques to push the atmosphere that was so crucial to this release. Both sides were mastered together by Jack Control from Enormous Door who did a fantastic job unifying the whole release.

Recording is a tiring, combative, and affirming experience. We wanted to embrace the elements available to us in a studio setting and to do [bassist/vocalist] SVR’s setup as much justice as we could. So much is lost in recording and some vibrations can only be felt in person, but this recording is as close to capturing that magic as possible. We spent weeks on the mix making sure everything meshed well and enveloped the listener precisely how we envisioned.

Your sound remains gnarly, bass-only sludge-corrupted death metal. But how has Bog Body evolved or changed since your demo, in your own eyes?
With a two week tour last year and nearly three years of playing together there was an urge to try something more expansive. We didn’t let the idea of how this would be played live limit our song writing, nor did we concern ourselves with making sure it would please any particular listener. We set many goals for ourselves since we began this campaign and the list only gets longer; we have only scratched the surface of all that we would like to accomplish.

From the beginning we knew The Gate of Grief would be a longer work with a more involved structure. Instrumentation hasn’t been a limiter but rather a honing rod; allowing us to put attention on the more important aspects. Recording together for the second time also afforded us the experience of knowing what we liked and what we wanted from the recording. Hearing it on vinyl is the final affirmation that those choices and the time spent wasn’t wasted. For a release about the migration and death of ancient life, it’s only fitting we expanded our sound.

What topics does your side of the split cover in its songs? What is “The Gate of Grief?”
Blood poured out of Africa and into the Middle East over 70,000 years ago as humanity trudged across a land bridge that connected modern day Ethiopia and Yemen. The scale of such an effort, the collective sacrifice and suffering is unimaginable. To shape the future of humanity, we strove into the unknown, risking everything with the thought of a different tomorrow; at the core of this, again, is the duality of life and death. Like the body that fertilized the soil, those that traversed the strait fertilized the new lands. Death will always be a beginning and that is at the core of this release.

Did you alter your approach to these tracks in any way to compliment or crush PM’s side?
Both groups worked with the same source material and unifying theme. We knew Primitive Warfare’s side would be uncompromisingly fast and violent, and that was enough for us. We did not alter our approach to this release with them in mind. We only felt emboldened knowing there would be a competent pairing to our effort. 


What made the band want to release a split with Bog Body?
We were impressed by the abysmal dirge of their demo and decided to reach out as label mates. They are both extremely organized and obscenely talented songwriters. 

What information can you provide regarding the recording of your side? With whom did you record and where?
All Primitive Warfare releases have been recorded in the Iron Tomb of Pu239. All drums are recorded in one take without metronomes or triggering.

Your sound has not relented yet. It is still fast, brutal and uncompromising. But, in your own opinion, how has Primitive Warfare changed or evolved since your last effort?
We continue to push for sonant nuclear absolution, a quaking force reverting audial evolution to its most primal form. As we progress as a band, our sound regresses. 

Your side of the split is titled Undulating Torment? What is intended by this meaning? What kind of torment moves in waves?
An unrelenting darkened tide flowing into the lungs of straggled nomadic clans. This split holds a unified theme based on the Gate of Grief and the legend of a land bridge collapsing under the feet thousands of screaming throats. A sanguine torrent born of strife and stolen breath. A wave of agony bleeding onto parched soil.  

What should new listeners to your sound know before going in?
Primitive Warfare is the audial homicide of the weak, the execution of theocratic idols, the destruction of man’s arrogance, and the harbinger of the morning star. As the sky will burn and retinas will bleed, Primitive Warfare shall reign.