Rogga Johansson – Entrance to the Otherwhere (Review)

Rogga Johansson - Entrance to the OtherwhereRogga Johansson is a Swedish death metal legend and this is his second solo album.

Rogga Johansson is a man of many bands – listing groups like Paganizer, Down Among the Dead Men, and Echelon only scratches the surface. Not content with his many, many projects, he also has this eponymously named new album. As you would expect, it’s death metal, pure and undiluted.

Entrance to the Otherwhere contains 33 minutes of old-school, Swedish death metal-influenced heaviness. The style is very much one of a song-based approach, with the artist concentrating on classic songwriting, engaging riffs, and plenty of melody. The songs add elements of bands such as Obituary, Hypocrisy, and (early) Amorphis into their Swedish death metal base, mixing these other bands with the usual Grave/Entombed/Dismember-isms with ease and skill.

Yes, for all that this is, ultimately, a Swedish death metal release, there’s more than just that here. It doesn’t limit itself to the genre, and the melodic aspect of the songs in particular has a much wider range than the macabre melodies of the traditional Swedish style. Catchy, memorable, and filled with hooks, this is one of Rogga Johansson’s most enjoyable forays into the death metal killing grounds.

Every aspect of this album is both professionally and passionately delivered. Here’s a man that not only loves his work, but has the knowledge and skills to back up that love with a professional level of quality.

Despite my soft spot for Swedish death metal in general, I find it hard to imagine that anyone would fail to appreciate Entrance to the Otherwhere, at least in passing. For those more committed souls who like to truly devour releases like this; this is an album of well-written, satisfying death metal. Delivered by a master of the genre, Entrance to the Otherwhere is an essential listen for death metal aficionados everywhere.

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