Entrails – Obliteration (Review)

EntrailsThis is the fourth album from Swedish Death Metallers Entrails.

Upon pressing play you’re greeted with some ominous bells. What follows is authentic Old-School Swedish Death Metal, and everything that this much-loved/maligned sub-genre offers.

Obliteration has a crushing sound and features the full compliment of chainsaws, as is normally expected from the style. Everything sounds great and the music immediately sucks you in.

I do have a soft-spot for this type of Death Metal it’s true, but this is such an honest style of brutality that it’s hard not to be captivated by it.

The band write good songs and good riffs. That alone should be enough to endear them to most metalheads in my opinion. Add to this the strong production and vocals that sound like they’ve been dredged up from the deepest pit and Obliteration is a very well-rounded album.

The best thing, though, is the songs themselves. They have an energy to them that cannot be denied and it’s clear that the band still have a healthy passion for the style even though this is their fourth full-length outing.

Coupled with the quality riffing is the Swedish Death Metal melody that we know and love. Then there’s the catchy songs with decent choruses; this is a recipe for a winner, not to mention what I can only imagine is a phenomenal live show.

A very impressive album. Entrails demonstrate once more why they’re at the top of the heap when it comes to Swedish Death Metal.

For fans of Grave, Dismember, Unleashed, Entombed, and the like.

Soulskinner – Crypts of Ancient Wisdom (Review)

SoulskinnerThis is the third album from Greek Death Metal band Soulskinner.

Soulskinner play Old-School Death Metal with plenty of heaviness and atmosphere.

Very early on the band establish that they are extremely proficient at recreating that raw, elemental feeling that you used to get when you were first getting into Death Metal and you were discovering new things all of the time; Soulskinner delve back into that bygone era when Death Metal was young and vibrant and it’s a joy to hear it.

The album is aptly named as it seems as if the band have discovered a crypt of ancient Death Metal know-how and the songs here strike an immediate chord with the listener. This is primal, atavistic Death Metal at its best, recalling the very early days of bands like Bolt Thrower, Entombed, Gorefest, Grave, Hypocrisy, Septic Flesh, Asphyx, etc.

The songs are full of graveyard atmosphere, rotting brutality and ancient intelligence. Quality riffs are thrown around like they’re going out of fashion and the level of songwriting skill is through the roof.

I love the small, but important, little details they add in. Whether this is a riff here, a drum fill there, a small piano part here, a malevolent melody there…it all adds up and these songs are just great.

This is a exceptional collection of songs. Fantastic riffs and occult melodies combine to create atmospherically brutal tracks of classic Death Metal.

As is fitting for a band like this, the vocals are flawless; deep, guttural, cavernous growls that sound inhuman and timeless.

It’s very easy to get bored of Old-School bands who just want to relive the past but add nothing to it. Soulskinner are different though, as they seem more like forgotten relics from a time gone past that have recently been unearthed to spread their plague anew. It may be old and rotten but it’s still as fresh as the dawn of the scene.

A very highly recommended listen. Soulskinner will rekindle your love of probably the first Extreme Metal genre you ever got into.

Disinterred – Incantation (Review)

DisinterredDisinterred are a Death Metal band from Belgium and this is their latest EP.

Ahhh I do love a bit of Swedish Death Metal. Yes they’re from Belgium but who cares? Your general tolerance levels for this much loved/maligned genre, (depending on your viewpoint), will dictate how you get on with Disinterred.

If you like Grave, Dismember, etc. then Disinterred should be right up your gravestone-lined alleyway.

The songs are short, heavy and full of quality Death Metal riffage. They have that classic chainsaw sound and all of the requisite parts are in place, including the sinister melodies.

The vocalist has a very nice voice indeed. Dark, deep growls are barked out with precision and hatred. Nice work that man!

At only 13 minutes in length there’s no messing around here; straight to the point Death Metal in the Old-School Swedish style.

Good sound, good songs. What’s not to like?

Resistance – The Seeds Within (Review)

ResistanceResistance are a Belgian Death Metal band and this is their fifth album.

This is brutal and heavy music designed to destroy. Resistance play Modern Death Metal with a hint of Deathcore in places, but only a hint.

The recording is clinical and polished with everything sounding clear and strong. The band play their tunes tightly and use all of their available tools to go straight for the throat.

Resistance’s sound combines  the surgical riffing of Decapitated, the groove of Grave and the modernity of Job For A Cowboy. It lends for a very strong sound that isn’t restricted to any one of those three styles as it borrows from all.

The singer has a throaty roar that sounds every bit as muscular as the music. Not dissimilar to the singer of Grave, he provides a catchy Death Metal voice to work alongside the infectious riffing.

And this is an album of riffs. Heavy, groovy, blasting riffs. They dot Resistance’s landscape like bomb craters and leave just as much of a mark. A large amount of consideration and thought has obviously gone into these songs and the result is very enjoyable indeed.

Quality Death Metal from Belgium. Listen at full volume.

Those Who Bring The Torture – Piling Up (Review)

those who bring the tortureThose Who Bring The Torture are from Sweden and this is their fourth album of Death Metal.

This is the latest album featuring Rogga Johansson, who we’ve met before in Megascavenger. This should already tell you a little something about the quality levels on this release.

According to the promo text, Those Who Bring The Torture play their Death Metal in a style that will suit fans of Grave, Hypocrisy and Malevolent Creation; it’s hard to argue with this description.

This is Swedish Death Metal at its core but with a few additional elements that prevent it sounding generic. Imagine Hypocrisy if they created a Swedish Death Metal album but with their own, older sound.

The songs are heavy and strong, and like its Swedish Death Metal heritage it’s strong on melodies. These melodies are memorable and provide a focus point for the songs to move around. There are some great riffs here and each track demonstrates a band who are capable of combining Death Metal brutality with sterling melody and songwriting.

Vocally the deep growls are bowel loosening and very satisfying. Higher screams are added to this when necessary and it’s a faultless performance all round.

This timeless and classic approach to Death Metal pays real dividends and Piling Up is an easy album to like. The songs carry themselves with an air of familiarity but just enough to evoke a smile and not enough to roll the eyes like you’ve heard it all before.

Those Who Bring The Torture have got their killing style down to a fine, bloody art. Anyone who’s into Old-School/Classic/Swedish Death Metal will have no cause to complain when they hear this.

Time to raise the flag for proper Death Metal once more. Let the slaughter commence.

Morbid Flesh – Embedded In The Ossuary (Review)

Morbid FleshMorbid Flesh are a Death Metal band from Spain, and this is their latest EP.

It starts off with an atmospheric instrumental track Entrance to the Ossuary which whets the appetite with its Bolt Thrower-esque melodies and build up. After this we’re into the thick of it with Charnel House and it’s clear that the band are channelling the greats of Swedish Death Metal for their primal sound.

The riffs are good choices and the drums are a powerful backbone keeping everything on track. Rather than adhereing strictly to the blueprint laid down by the Swedish masters however, the band are not afraid to add a bit of atmospherics to their sound and they excel at all of the wailing, screaming solos.

So, a nice bit of Grave and Dismember, with a little bit of a Death influence added.

The vocalist is adept at his calling, with some deep growls to accompany the chainsaw-assault and the melodic outbreaks.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I appear to have a soft spot for this kind of Death Metal. But honestly, what’s not to like?

Listen for yourself.

Decomposed – Devouring (Review)

DecomposedDecomposed are a Swedish Death Metal band.

Devouring is rooted in the Old-School and the band have a fair grasp of what makes a compelling record from back then.

Reminiscent of many from that era in Swedish Death Metal history, (Dismember, Grave, Unleashed, etc.); they pile them all into a pot, boil them alive and use the remains to create an enjoyable album of putrid riffing and foetid tones.

Decomposed take a methodical approach to their slaughter; slicing through flesh and hacking off limbs with efficiency and glee. They do take the time to smell the corpses however, as evidenced by the slower and more introspective parts of the songs.

The guitars roll and heave, while the drums smack down hard and the vocalist roars with all of his might. A passion for Death Metal is clear from the start and combined with a good ear for songwriting it makes Devouring a solid listen.

The more I listen to this the more I enjoy it. Get yourself a healthy blast of Old-School Swedish assault and listen to Decomposed.

Brutally Deceased – Dead Lovers’ Guide (Review)

Brutally DeceasedFrom the Czech Republic Brutally Deceased play Old-School Death Metal in the Swedish style.

Instantly bringing to mind acts such as Dismember and Grave, as well as the fact that the last song on the album is a Dismember cover and they’re named after a Grave song; you’ll soon realise that this band like their Swedish Death Metal. A lot. Added to the fact that the album has that Swedish sound and you’ll soon be unpacking that old chainsaw and setting it to work once more.

Like rediscovering a lost friend, the album explodes out of the speakers with the chainsaw buzz-riffs sawing away at your ears while the short, sharp vocals bite deep into your flesh.

This may not be highly original, but what it lacks in originality it makes up for in passion and enthusiasm. If you’re looking for the very latest in new things then look away as this is not for you, but if you like a solid slab of hero-worship and can’t get enough of classic Swedish Death Metal then you should definitely check this out. The fact that the band don’t actually come from Sweden is irrelevant.

A highly enjoyable trek down memory lane. Taken by itself this is a strong Old-School Death Metal album. The guitars roar, the drums pound and the vocals damage. They’ve succeeded in getting me moving; check them out and see if they can do the same for you.

Loudrage – Uglier Than Thou (Review)

LoudrageUgly music indeed. Heavy and battering, but with unexpected melodic flourishes now and again. Loudrage come from Romania and play Death Metal that’s heavy on the groove, reminding of classic bands like Grave and Konkhra in their heyday.

The first song Doomed is a classic-in-the-making, such a good song it is. I was expecting this to be a one-off but then the second song As Long As I Live is similarly impressive, (although not quite as good as Doomed). The rest of the EP follows on in a similar vein – top-quality, well-written songs which are catchy and have rhythms and riffs to die for.

Each song shares a similar construction; mid-paced, groove-laden, almost-Swedish-style Death Metal that really knows how to wield hooks, riffs and songwriting skills to get the most out of this style of music. Each song is menacing and bouncy at the same time, (as odd as that sounds), and has an energy that is undeniable.

The vocalist is excellent. The deepness of the growls touches something primeval inside and has all of the bowel-loosening qualities necessary to be incredibly satisfying. The higher screams are equally proficient.

The EP has a strong, clear, crunchy sound that fits the songs like a glove. An iron glove made for SMASHING!

I am genuinely surprised by how good this EP is. A band I hadn’t heard of coming out of seemingly nowhere who somehow appear to have delivered an absolute triumph of a release. How they remain unsigned is beyond me. Go and get this now.