Posts Tagged ‘Austerymn’

Death metal has been particularly healthy this year in the world of the Killchain. I’ve heard some storming releases, and to whittle it down to only ten seems unfair to the many great records I heard this year. I’m genuinely sorry to anyone I’ve reviewed that hasn’t made it in, because I’ve been totally into almost everything I’ve been sent! But it has to be done, and this is it!

10. Tormention – Chaotic Delusions: A solid, chunky death metal riff war machine of a record. Who needs to reinvent the wheel when the wheel has rarely sounded this good. Tormention crush and batter you into submission.

9. Kataklysm – Of Ghosts and Gods: Superb guitar harmonies mesh with a bombardment of double kicks, guttural but understandable roars and flesh searing riffs. Kataklysm may be getting a bit more melodic, but ‘Of Ghosts and Gods’ will still destroy a pit at ten feet.

8. Desecresy – Stoic Death: A slow, grinding album of Finnish death supreme, where speed has been traded in for a malevolent drudge through some of the darkest waters. Unholy, crawling chaos.

7. Putrevore – Tentacles of Horror: Probably my favourite of all Rogga Johansson’s releases this year, Putrevore smash you into the ground with pure, gurgling death metal. Viciously sludgy and with a simply awesome guitar tone, Putrevore slay.

6. Austerymn – Sepulcrum Viventium: A killer debut of pure Swedeath worship, the UK’s answer to Dismember pulled out all the stops to create a memorably brutal record with razor sharp song writing and crushing heaviness.

5. Obituary – Inked in Blood: Legends fade over time, but Obituary don’t. Still as strong today as they were when they dropped ‘Slowly We Rot’. Iconic vocal belches pepper an album built on heavy as fuck riffing and an atmosphere of reeking death.

4. Abyssus – Into the Abyss: Out Obituary-ing Obituary is no mean feat, but Greek death metal squad Abyssus manage to create one of the finest Floridian death metal albums never to come out of Morrisound. I love the raw, uncompromisingly 90s feel about it, taking me back to the heady days when death metal was a little bit more simple!

3. Shrapnel Storm – Mother War: Filling the Bolt Thrower shaped void in my life, Shrapnel Storm has spun more often than I ever thought it could this year. The band just execute a brand of deathly groove that is totally addictive. The rumble of tanks is alive and well

2. Necrocosm – Damnation Doctrine: Spiralling tech death metal with oodles of melody and stunning fretwork. ‘Damnation Doctrine’ is one of metal’s finest debuts, and is held off the top spot by one of death metal’s most influential and untouchable bands.

1.Nile – What Should Not Be Unearthed: Flailing, raging technicality meets the ancient power of the pyramids once again as Nile emerge from their tombs, laying upon us another blueprint of apocalyptic, ancient death. Once again proving that they are the greatest death metal outfit going, ‘What Should Not Be Unearthed’ is endlessly stunning.

Ladies and gentlemen, the scientific discovery of the century has been made, and it has been made in the UK of all places. Apparently time machines have been invented by four blokes in a metal band. Who would’ve thunk it? I mean, that’s got to be why this record sounds like every awesome Swedish death metal riff you’ve ever and never heard. Clearly the band has gone back and raided the notebooks of Dismember, Grave, Entombed, Edge of Sanity and any other you can name.

I reviewed Austerymn’s demo last September, and the love was falling out of me. Since that time, they’ve managed to get Memento Mori to take them on to release this, ‘Sepulcrum Viventium’, their debut record. For a band that’s been together in various forms since 1990, you would expect the music to be well written, but that doesn’t quite prepare you for the wonderful nostalgia trip that ‘Sepulcrum Viventium’ takes you on. After the short intro, ‘Feeding the Grotesque’ drops you straight into a nest of chainsaw riffs and gurgling rasping howls. This is classic old school death metal, lacking both frills and fancy bits. This is the straightforward nasty shit that got you into death metal in the first place.

There’s nothing shiny, there’s none of this uber technical wankery that abounds in modern death metal bands. There is, instead, tons of reeking filthy atmosphere, flesh shredding riffing and a murky production that enhances the music. ‘In Death…We Speak’ still stands up to the newer material as probably my favourite Austerymn song, although the rampant ‘Written in the Scars’ and the melodic ‘Darkness Burns Forever’ push it close. ‘Excarnation’ still flays flesh from bone, and the short, sharp vomitation of ‘Necrolation’ is enough to rattle the dead.

Austerymn’s debut is probably one of my favourite death metal records of the past few years. I knew when I heard their demo last year that they were capable of something like this, but hearing it is something else. Comfortably destroyed expectations, the UK’s next big hope in death metal is here, and ‘Sepulcrum Viventium’ is only for starters…

Austerymn have been going for 24 years in various forms and are yet to release a debut album in any of their incarnations. I mean, that’s a fucking long time man, and their recently released two track demo ‘In Death…We Speak’ makes that statement seem even more ridiculous. If this band has been THIS good for that length of time, why did no one ever sign them? Seriously? I NEED ANSWERS! Anyway, their promo is available from their bandcamp for nothing if you want it. Which you will after you hear it.

‘In Death… We Speak’ is a slab of serious Swedish death metal worship. The opener and title track has a brilliant, chainsaw riff that just screams classic Grave or Dismember. This is relentless, pummelling death metal glory with all the blood and guts required. Vocally you’re looking at a brutal cross between the gargling of Autopsy and the growl of Entombed. Second track ‘Excarnation’ is more of the same, except faster and more brutal. It is a flailing, slavering beast that has crawled out of Stockholm circa 1991 and then slept for over a decade before being awakened by these masters of death. Seriously labels, get this band released properly! As they said themseves, they may be clones and worshippers of the iconic Swedish scene, but at least they do it well. Well is an understatement.