Into The Crypts Of Blasphemy
posted on 7/2010 By:
As most regular readers at my various outlets know, old school Swedish metal gives me a tremendous boner. From its fore bearers in Entombed, Grave and Dismember through unheralded gems like Nirvana 2002, Gorement and God Macabre and into homages like Bloodbath, Rib Spreader and Evocation (and even US entries like Fatalist, Black Breath and Invasion), I cant get enough of the stuff. And while last year was highlighted by superb releases by Torture Division, Axis Powers, Fatalist and Demonical, 2010 looks to have an equally impressive crop of Stockholm-styled brilliance with the likes of Nominon, Invasion, Lifeless, Insidious Disease, Grave, Entrails and the long-awaited debut from Sweden’s Interment.
I say "long-awaited" because like, say, Evocation, Entrails, Nirvana 2002 and others, this band was flitting around in the early 90s when the genre exploded, but they never really released anything formal or official other than demos, splits and such. So, here we are, almost 20 years later, and the debut full-length album has dropped, and what else would you expect from a group of Swedish death metal veterans featuring current and former members of Demonical and Centinex? Pure, unabashed Stockholm goodness -- that’s what.
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Crypt Of Kerberos / Tyrant axeman Peter Bjärgö, Into the Crypts of Blasphemy features an expectedly mid-range buzz and rumble that’s raw yet powerful as well as the no-nonsense, pure evil vocals of Johan Jansson. Of course, an album like this is all about the music, and Interment is straight from the Stockholm scene of the early 90s; the album reeks of early Grave, Carnage (basically a rougher version of Dismember), and of course Nihilist. Scrawling solos, d-beat rumbles, thick grooves, pummeling bass and drums and nary a triggered blast or breakdown in sight. A little more urgent and feral than some of this year's releases, the pace is a pretty up-tempo and steady beat for most of the album, but Crypts still has plenty of time changes and mid-tempo lurches that are par for the course for the genre. All 9 tracks are satisfying in their delivery, but the likes of “Sacrificial Torment”, with its instantly recognizable gallop, and “Morbid Death”, with its pure-1990 opening scrawl and yet another timeless canter, make for a grin-inducing later stage of the album.
Until I recently heard Tales from the Morgue by Entrails (which might be the best recent example of the genre since Bloodbath’s debut), Into the Crypts of Blasphemy was hands down my favorite retro album of the year. But second place is no chump, and the album is still a slab of perfectly executed nostalgia that all fans of the genre and classic death metal of any sort should check out.
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