British melodic death metallers Slugdge represent something of a Platonic ideal for efficiency in the low-overhead world of underground metal. While most bands still trudge through the conventional industry motions of label contracts, pre-release press cycles, and extensive touring, Slugdge have stripped down their operation to the bare minimum: They don’t work with a label or producer, they don’t play live, and only after three self-produced and self-released digital albums have they begun dabbling in the logistical nightmare that is pressing physical merch. This lean structure has allowed them to produce new music at a prodigious pace that’s more commonly seen in electronic music and other studio-intensive styles. Slugdge have released three LPs in three years, and their last two albums, 2015’s Dim & Slimeridden Kingdoms and 2014’s Gastronomicon, landed on Stereogum’s Best Metal features for their respective years.
Slugdge look poised to maintain that breakneck tempo with the YouTube release of “Slave Goo World,” an unheralded single for an equally unheralded upcoming fourth album. (If the band’s release history is anything to go by, anyway; they released a number of songs from Dim & Slimeridden Kingdoms on YouTube months in advance.) Though this band only appeared a few years ago, it’s tempting to call this tune “classic Slugdge,” right down to the punny song title — huge, stuttering tremolo riffs galumph their way up a series of increasingly intense melodic apexes, eventually topped by a searing clean chorus from vocalist Matt Moss. You can hear traces of familiar extreme metal touchstones like Morbid Angel, Hypocrisy, and Anaal Nathrakh along the way, but at this point Slugdge have a well-defined and bizarrely lovable personality all their own. Listen.