With the hotly anticipated follow-up to their 2017 debut Blood Offerings, Oakland power trio Necrot has delivered a master class in old-school death metal, underpinned by the mother of all existential themes: mortality. “For us, talking about mortality and impermanency is a positive message, because you can’t get sad about something that is inevitable and is a shared destiny,” Italian-born vocalist/bassist Luca Indrio tells Apple Music. Musically speaking, Indrio and his bandmates—guitarist Sonny Reinhardt and drummer Chad Gailey—somehow created an even more impressive album than their highly regarded debut. “There was definitely more pressure to do something really good because Blood Offerings was super well-received, but we were also so much more prepared,” Indrio explains. “For us, it was never a question that this album was going to be better.” Below, he breaks down each song on Mortal.
Your Hell “This track talks about how trauma creates more trauma; the effects that any negative or violent action will have on the person that is the victim is eventually going to create the next perpetrator of trauma and violence. ‘My hell will be yours’—that’s what the lyrics say—it’s a cycle of pain that gets perpetuated by marking people and creating more trauma. It’s like contagious hate. Fixing things now will benefit future generations more than ourselves, but the way we are conducting our lives is creating more pain in the future for people that are born right now.”
Dying Life “This song talks about the mortal human condition. It talks about taking off your skin—like taking off your mask that you created to live in society. It’s about being more conscious of what you really are, which is a struggling body holding together a mortal life that is every day getting closer to the end. People forget that they’re going to have to die—and not only in the physical sense of dying, but also we often lose so much in terms of people, situations, or a job or a house or a family—things you thought you were going to have forever. But it’s important to be able to let things go instead of living in this facade of being here forever or maintaining the things that you have.”
Stench of Decay “‘Stench of Decay’ talks of human greed and how money drives 90 percent of everybody’s actions and thoughts, even on an artistic level. So many things we do are related to money and success, and lots of times it’s like we get influenced by the results. We are driven by wanting more for ourselves rather than the bettering of everybody. We are living by a standard that is destroying pretty much everything. And that’s why lots of people feel empty in society and out of place—because not everybody wants to be driven by these things. But we live in a world that teaches you that if you’re not producing and making money, you’re pretty much wasting your time and you’re a loser.”
Asleep Forever “This goes back to the mortal theme of the album and of ‘Dying Life,’ which is acknowledging that you’re dying, acknowledging that everything is going to end. You’re going to be asleep forever. Most people don’t want to think about that, but other people can find comfort in it, because the truth is that you get to let go and suffer less. When you accept that idea, you can live more fully rather than hiding behind thinking that things are meant to be forever.”
Sinister Will “‘Sinister Will’ talks about soldiers going to war. I’ve met a lot of veterans at our shows and heard a lot of stories, so I felt driven to write a song about war from the perspective of the person who is there before they become a soldier. Because once you become a soldier, you’re just following orders and you’re completely expendable. Often people go to war driven by bigger ideals but after you’ve been there—if you survive—you kind of wonder why you went. So it’s about people deciding to go to war and then having the realization that they’ve been used and that actually this greater purpose didn’t exist.”
Malevolent Intention “This kind of goes back to [the theme of] ‘Stench of Decay,’ but it focuses on power more than money. If your goal is being more powerful, the things you’re going to have to do often have a malevolent connotation. Because when your actions are driven by the goal of gaining more power, you’re not trying to make things better. You’re not doing things to help anybody. Your actions are not for your spiritual growth or growth as a person. You’re forced into a game where there is not much space for morality or anything else.”
Mortal “‘Mortal’ is the ultimate reminder that you’re going to die. A lot of our songs talk about this, like ‘Shadows and Light’ on Blood Offerings. And it’s not just your physical body that dies—your memory is going to disappear along with everybody else’s. Everything is 100 percent impermanent, but you believe differently because you don’t understand time or you have a limited way of seeing time that only goes like a hundred years after your death or something. So this is about acknowledging that you’re a mortal being on a place where everything disappears if you wait long enough.”