Malignant, The Defragmentation Begins... (various labels, 2023)

Despite all the best efforts of screams for unifying change throughout the years, some would say our world is more divided than in any recent time of history.

From global to personal matters, daily life can seem overwhelming to say the least. I've personally been struggling with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) flashbacks and a sense of feeling threatened more than usual over the last week.

After first seeing Malignant's video premiere last week, I was contacted by their guitarist Mario Garofano about the Greek metallic hardcore band's latest EP, The Defragmentation Begins...

At just shy of 10 minutes, Mario and the other members of Malignant have managed to synthesize their experiences of the world into three solid songs. Starting with the final track, "Unrestrained," Malignant presents a charged summation of the fire built over time as holier-than-thou politicians continue to bathe in the blood of others.

Rather than being crushed by current events, the lyrics give words to strengthen personal resolve in seeing and living beyond your current circumstances.

Also, with the primarily guttural vocals of Malignant and the shrieking/shout vocals by Cosmo Vidussi of Contention; these energizing lyrics are presented with a contrast of styles that find a way to come together. 

"Unbound from your demise
I overcome
Unrestrained from all you built
I reach beyond.
I reach beyond your world of madness
To bring a world of balance"

Continuing in reverse order, the second song is called "No More Disregard." While defining a personal worldview can sound daunting and maybe even a bit pointless; the best thing about having a clear approach to the world is also being aware that there will regularly be more to learn than you previously knew about.

Unfortunately, some people define their worldview and then decide to abandon all reason and logic in favor of comfort. The extreme convenience and privilege of this act are all too common; I hear this song as a reminder to not fall into that trap. I also hear a reminder to do our best to encourage our respective communities to not claim to know it all and to remain open to new information.

Photo: Dearohwell

Finally, and similar to my thoughts about "No More Disregard," the opening song of the EP is called "Shattered." I could talk about a few different instances, but I'll reference a specific instance tied to my PTSD. 15 years ago, I was jumped and beaten by three local gang members for what I was later told would be an initiation of two of my attackers. After this attack combined with years of racist humor expressed by older family members, I had a skewed and wrong view of many people in the world.

It's terrible to realize your contributions to the collective mess of our society and without sounding too overdramatic, it offers an important opportunity. You can choose to change and listen when you've previously refused or become part of the madness of this world at your own risk. I'd like to think I've taken many steps in a better direction than I could have chosen, but I also know I have more to learn. Put differently, the final lyrics of "Shattered" are these words: "Incinerate your mind and start anew."


The Defragmentation Begins... will be released on all digital platforms on November 17th. 7" vinyl will be available for pre-order through LDB Records (US), One Two Six Records (EU), and the band.

Digipak CDs and limited cassettes will be available through the band and Bound By Modern Age Records (EU), as well as jewel-case CDs through Force of Reckoning Records (US).

Tagged: malignant