Sunday, September 18, 2011

ENTRAILS - "The Tomb Awaits" Review

I see death metal in the same way I see a lot of hardcore; that is, as a style of music that metaphorically destroys everything in its way, and which gives the listener a sense of absolute strength and raging power. Heavy music has a magical way of destroying weakness and depression, and we have bands like Sweden's ENTRAILS to thank for that!

This awesome band has just released 12 songs of pure Swedish death metal at its best, similar to stuff like early Entombed, Dismember and Sinister (even though the last band is Dutch).  This album really  brings us back to a time when metal albums actually had substance to them and carried their own distinct identity. This is exactly what happens in The Tomb Awaits: there is plenty death metal carnage but at the same time the whole album is filled with a nice diversity which makes it so much more of a pleasant listen. At the end of the day, this is exactly what Swedish DM is traditionally all about: clever ideas combined with aggression!

What I mean by the above is that even though ENTRAILS do play pure and solid death metal, there is enough space for musical expression and a somewhat darker (compared to brutal death) atmosphere. The guitarists are capable of creating some pretty sick atmospheric riffs with the lower guitar strings that will send shivers down your spine and make the zombies in your local graveyard rise up. At the same time, the drums and vocals show no signs of compromise and just beat your brain and ears with endless aggression! Add a tiny dose of Swedish crust to the mix and you will get what I'm talking about!

The production sound also carries the recognizable Swedish identity, with the distorted bass on equal levels with the guitars and the overall outcome sounding brutally bubbling, but in a way controlled.  Finally, I will also give the band kudos for the awesome acoustic guitar introduction, which gets the cemetery atmosphere going before all hell breaks loose.

For an extensive ENTRAILS interview go here.

PROS: Definite old school death metal feel, quality riffs, excellent Swedish production, wide variety of extremely brutal death metal vocals, crust-core rhythms here and there.

CONS: If you listen to this late at night you might sh*t your pants.

DA LOWDOWN: Awesome, solid Swedish death metal with room for sick melodies without being overly technical.

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