March of the Parasite
posted on 4/2007 By:
Side projects are usually regarded lightly, something that fans of the members’ original band investigate out of curiosity. But others manage to command respect by turning out as good or better than the full-time acts. Scar Symmetry and Bloodbath come to mind, and now, so do Laethora. This supergroup is formed by Niklas Sundin of the mighty Dark Tranquillity on the guitar, and most of Swedish rockers, The Provenance, on guitars, bass, and drums. Rounding out the band, Jonatan Nordenstam roars his way through these ten songs of raw Swedish death metal.
“Raw” is one of the only words I can come up with to describe the production on this fine little disc. The drums sound authentic and unprocessed, while the guitars start to develop that familiar buzzsaw distortion. The studio managed to match the mix to the band perfectly. In fact, some of the vocals sound as tortured as those from The Amenta. Their tempo is generally slow or mid-speed, with occasional outbursts of acceleration that betray a slight hint of a punk/early hardcore influence.
“Clothing for the Dead” is a scorcher with multiple tempo changes glued together by a backdrop of relentless drumming. “Black Void Remembrance” focuses more on developing an unpleasant atmosphere, utilizing a bleak clean guitar tone, black metal riffing, and primal roars. Killer stuff. This is contrasted by “Warbitrary”, which is just balls-to-the-wall speed. March of the Parasite lacks filler tracks, with the possible exception of the album closer, which is tortuously slow and filled with bestial vocals. Nearly all of the songs have something to say, or rather, something to bludgeon with.
Laethora is a difficult band to categorize, treading the lines between doom, death, black, and thrash. Maybe characterization isn’t necessary; a simple “Heavy F-ing Metal” will suffice. March of the Parasite is a satisfying disc if for those listeners that enjoy raw, visceral metal.
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