I have a soft spot for Swedish death metal, and Maim play the style very well.
If you’re one of those hapless souls that has had enough of this particular sub-genre, then I very much doubt that Ornaments of Severity will sway you to the cause. However, for those that are still partial to the style, (or more than a bit partial), then Maim’s latest album is chock full of explosive rhythms, punishing drums, guttural vocals, and macabre melodies.
Death metal like this is solid and reliable. Although both of those words can occasionally be read to have negative connotations, here they are used in purely positive ways. You pretty much know exactly what you’re getting into with Ornaments of Severity before you press play for the first time, and the band absolutely deliver.
I also like that they don’t stick to just one interpretation of the sub-style. Within its fairly restrictive parameters, they explore various different facets of Swedish death metal. This includes the fast parts, d-beats, mid-paced groove, dark melodies, and grim atmospheres. This is all well-structured and composed, meaning that this is an album with a decent amount of variety across the playing time, and songs that all have their own personalities and are recognisable from each other.
Ornaments of Severity is an enjoyable and satisfying slab of the Swedish good stuff.
Unleash the chainsaws and get ready for carnage with Maim.