Washington D.C. based death metal collective Genocide Pact has been leaving a path of destruction since 2013, so it stands to reason that 2021 should be just another showcase of that violence and a footnote in an ever advancing career. Genocide Pact is the band’s third proper album and second for Relapse, and it's an album that showcases the band sounding tighter than ever before. Without being labeled as a death/doom band, Genocide Pact aren’t shy in treading that sacred ground that was forged by Bolt Thrower, a slow crawl across the battlefield with heavy and chunky riffs leading the charge, especially on “Perverse Dominion,” a previous single.

The album art should stand out to most fans of the history of extreme metal: sonically, it hearkens back to the classic sounds of Napalm Death’s Scum, Brutal Truth’s Extreme Conditions and even more recently Noisem’s Agony Defined, while real-world looking imagery helps fans to make more personal connections considering the visceral effect this can have on listeners. Rest assured this is a death metal album, but other extreme genres are just more fodder to keep this train a’rollin with the aforementioned doom and blast beats a la grindcore to name just a few. Vocalist Tim Mullaney’s gruff delivery provides ample direction for his fellow soldiers as they continue their violent advance on your eardrums, while he pulls double duty on guitars with fellow axe men Demir Soyer and bassist Mike Nolan.

Today we are premiering the track “Deprive/Degrade,” a relatively short affair (as is the album as a whole) with a lot of depth on display, including what drummer Connor Donegan describes below as an ode to some of their favorite classic old school heavies and the work going into getting that playing speed just right. The end result is a perfect combination of what he describes, appealing to the old heads and scene neophytes too.

In the interview below, drummer Connor Donegan discusses recording during the pandemic, the band’s influences, and their favorite albums of 2021. Just when you thought 2021 was over, these D.C. destroyers and this December drop had other ideas: Genocide Pact is an all-out assault.

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What has this last 2 year period been like for the band in the absence of touring?

We were lucky that the pandemic aligned perfectly with us doing the new album. We were already planning on kinda taking a break from shows and focusing on writing, but then COVID obviously shut the door on live music so we didn't have much of a choice anyway [laughs]. We missed playing live but I'm glad we got to use our downtime making an album that we're all really proud of.

Being from the DC area, what local bands influenced you and/or your sound?

We love a lot of bands from our city but I wouldn’t say any of them influenced our sound. The only one that could even really come close would be Pentagram, but we don’t sound anything like them. We’re mainly influenced by bands from the UK, Florida, and New York.

What is the concept behind the excellent album artwork this time around?

A lot of Death Metal bands take a similar approach to album art and we just wanted to do something different. We had Joe Petagno do a huge Death Metal style painting for our last album and as much as we loved it we didn't feel like it accurately represented us. A few of us come from a Grindcore background and we wanted to showcase some of that influence and vibe in the artwork. Also our lyrics are based in reality, not fantasy, so it makes more sense for us to have real world events depicted in our artwork rather than a fictitious drawing.

The band sounds super tight on Genocide Pact—what helped contribute to that level of cohesiveness?

We rehearsed a ton before recording the album. We had a few different studio dates planned that kept getting pushed back due to Covid, and I think we just got tighter and tighter the longer we had to wait to start tracking. We also recorded the album without a click track, so what you’re hearing is totally natural and real. Not a lot of bands do it like that these days, but we like things rugged and raw.

Pull back the veil a bit on "Deprive/Degrade"; how did it come together as a whole?

Tim and I wanted to write something faster, shorter, and more brutal than anything we've ever done. Napalm Death, Terrorizer, Assuck... Those are bands we've always looked up to and tried to emulate in one way or another... This song is the best representation of that. When we wrote it I wasn't even sure if I'd be able to confidently play it on the drums... Spent a lot of hours practicing blast beats in my practice space trying to get it tight!

2021 has had a ton of excellent death metal to its credit. What are some of the band's favorites?

My personal favorite has been the Dream Unending album on 20 Buck Spin. Justin and Derrick are good friends of mine and it was awesome to see them working together and creating such unique and powerful music. I also really like the Antichrist Siege Machine album Profound Lore just put out. Those guys are our brothers and it's been awesome to see them get more brutal with every release. Saw them in DC the other day and completely decimated the place.

What are you looking most forward to about touring since that is back on the table again?

Just getting out there and performing. I love the crowds, the energy, and getting to travel and see all the friends we've made over the years. I'm also obviously excited to see how the audiences react to the new songs.

What is the band's ideal live show to play with or attend?

Anything involving the band CARCASS from Liverpool England.

Which bands do we need to hear more from/are flying under the radar?
DELIRIANT NERVE is a new band from DC to look out for. Punishing Grindcore that'll blow your hair back. Also make sure to listen to DESTRUCT from Richmond if you haven't already.

Anything else you would like to add?

Thanks to everyone who's checked out the new songs! Buy the album and come to our shows in New York and DC if you're on the east coast. Go Pats.

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Genocide Pact releases December 3rd via Relapse Records.