Review Summary: Does the chick on the front of the album look like she enjoys being chased around by a gigantic sea beast? No, because she hasn't heard this yet.
After the death of 2008 and becoming the favourite record label of metalheads around the world, Razorback Records are back and have opened 2009 right where 2008 ended. In the latter year, this label have single-handedly proven that Old School Death Metal is alive and kicking by introducing us to bands similar to Acid Witch and Hooded Menace. Last year, 2009, just to avoid any confusion, RR have introduced us to Old School Death Metal act, Revolting. Revolting manage to perform that trick that many Razorback bands do oh so well, creating music with not even a suggestion of any modern influence. From the groovy, intricate leads on Sheetar The Bloodqueen
to the menacing doom of the title track, it all feels very 90's-esque, recalling the days when death metal was at its peak, thanks to many bands from Sweden or Florida, before the scene began to get overrun with modernization.
clocks in at just over half an hour, which is a brief and powerful serving of catchy and heavy death metal. The vocals are provided by death metal legend Rogga Johansson, who's growls exhibit the hollowness of Matti Karki on Carnage's Dark Recollections
, and appropriately enough, the music often shows the same heaviness. The huge guitar sound of Grave's debut, Into The Grave
, is also an influence on tracks like They're Not Human
. Similarly to Grave, the verses see the pace accelerating, highlighting the band's ability to utilize extremely fast speeds and aggressive vocals.
The production is a little thinner that the aforementioned classics mentioned in the above paragraph, which certainly aids the vintage, old school feel better than the album cover, which looks like Japanese Monster Hentai... Or a classic Razorback Records album cover by some struggling, local death metal band. The production allows the wailing riffs of They're Not Human
and Moonshine Mutation
to become baleful, but fortunately the slower moments manage to retain plenty of thickness.
My only complaint, if you can call it that, is the lack of originality. Although this won't bother most, Revolting are one of those bands who can make a thoroughly enjoyable listen simply by the merit of sticking by the tired yet true formula for a death metal track. Rogga plays either catchily repetitive tremolo lines, even catchier lines in Overtaken By The Crawling
and Brainwaves Of Death
or almost as catchy and slow as a traditional, menacing Swedish death metal riff. Actually, it isn't really a complaint, as that whole approach sounds great throughout, although you'll have to look elsewhere for originality. The simplicity of the album allows it to flow very well, and, combined with its short length, makes it very tempting for repeated listens.
Old School Death Metal is one hell of a genre, perhaps, along with thrash metal, one of the best genres the metal world has ever encountered. If we look at thrash metal, it seems that the aging bands are trying to make a comeback, trying to relive the glory days as the phrase goes. Dreadful Pleasures
definitely has the spirit of the old days, without embarrassing itself by trying too hard. And I can say without a doubt, this is one hell of a trip. Buy it, steal it, whatever. And, if you manage to get arrested or caught, you won't regret it.