Revel in Flesh
posted on 5/2012 By:
The name of the band is taken from a song by Entombed / Nihilist.
The title of the album is taken from a song by Dismember / Carnage, albeit with a “k” where a “c” should be. (The spelling is itself a tribute, but not to Sweden, to American band Deathevokation, who in turn took their spelling-adjusted name from the same source material.)
So, since they’re name-checking their influences blatantly, feel like taking a guess as to what this record sounds like?
If you guessed ambient blackened noise-grind, you’re absolutely… an idiot.
Despite that Revel In Flesh is actually German, Deathevokation couldn’t be a whole lot more Swedish unless the album art was a picture of ABBA eating pickled herring on the hood of a Volvo. (As you can see, it isn’t. It’s just some suitably Seagrave-ian landscape courtesy of Spanish artist Juanjo Castellano.) The Sunlight Swedeath guitar tone is in full effect, and these tunes rip through some openly derivative but fairly well executed nods to Stockholm circa 1991, with some slight dashes of a less Scandinavian flair to keep things from being too predictable. (And hey, the Benediction cover is a nice choice, that band being forever underrated – this version certainly sports a better sound than the under-produced original.)
Still, this is old-school redux, hugely indebted to the expected forefathers of Entombed and Dismember and Grave, and it’s damn well proud of it. From the tremolo-picked melodies of “Shadowbreeder” to the chunky riffing of “Iron Coffin” (which is the best song here and also evokes a Bolt Thrower steamroller drive) to the tempo-shifting swing of “Opus Putrescence,” all of this has been done before and likely will be done again. Though the roots of Deathevokation are clearly, shamelessly and expressly Swedish, at least Revel In Flesh has sense enough to twist their tribute just a hair by incorporating hints of American and European death metal here and there – nothing breaks form, but there are moments that mix their primary ingredient with that touch of Bolt Thrower, a dash of Asphyx, a sliver of Floridian bite. There are some nice melodic touches that float through from time to time, as well – particularly in the almost symphonic guitar lines that close “Black Paled Elegy.”
So, sure, there’s nothing new in these grooves, and your tolerance for Deathevokation depends wholly upon your tolerance for retread Swedeath, of which there is currently no shortage. And truthfully, there are better bands plying a similar borrowed aesthetic – Entrails and Black Breath both offer take-offs on the style that are light years more interesting than this. Nevertheless, Deathevokation is far from bad – it’s an enjoyable listen, if not an innovative one by any stretch. It’s an open and acknowledged nod to the old school, and as such, it functions well enough for what it is to satiate fans who simply can’t get enough Stockholm death metal and are willing to overlook a little fiendish regression in their hate campaign.
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