Review Summary: One of death metal's most wonderfully weird albums.
So you want to get into death metal, eh" You've already listened to Death, Morbid Angel, Carcass and Suffocation" Then this might be the album that determines whether you were made for this genre or not. The 40-minute Nespithe
is the only album released by Finland's Demilich, but it makes for a worthwhile discography.
Antti Boman - Vocals/Guitar
Aki Hytonen - Guitar
Ville Koistinen - Bass
Mikko Vernes - Drums
Demilich may claim to hail from Finland, but their music comes from another planet. Antti Boman is one of the most bizarre, unique and difficult vocalists in all of metal. He sounds like he's literally burping out his twisted lyrics, and this can be a major turnoff. However, there is no better way to fit Demilich's music than the way Boman delivers. Your standard growl or bark would just be out of place.
The guitar-work on this album is twisting and unconventional. Demilich's twin guitars noodle and creep around, rarely playing chords and playing off each other well. This style makes Demilich much less heavy than the average death metal band, yet still mind-bending and inaccessible. Guitar solos are lacking in favor of strange dual-lead sections like the ones in "Echo (The Replacement)" and the ridiculously-titled "The Sixteenth Six-Tooth Son of Fourteen Four-Regional Dimensions (Still Unnamed)." Headbanging to Demilich is ill-advised.
Ville Koistinen's bass is somewhere in the middle of the mix, providing a nice backbone to the twin guitars as well as most of the record's heaviness. His basslines are not particularly complicated, but his style is quite unique compared to anything else coming out of the death metal genre in the early '90s. Rounding out the rhythm section is the talented Mikko Vernes. Vernes is not the type to play blastbeats all over the place, but his patterns are complex and provide a good counter-punch to the noodling of the six-string slingers.
The only flaw that Nespithe
has besides the vocals is the lack of variation between songs. Many of the riffs have a very similar feel to them and become almost predictable by the halfway point of the album. Besides the instrumental "Erecshyrinol" ("No lyrics here"), every song is a maze of twin leads and absurdly deep vocals that put the listener into the cosmic atmosphere the band tries to create. Thankfully, a relatively short run-time prevents things from getting boring.
If you are a death metal beginner, give a few other bands a shot before listening to Nespithe
. If you don't like it, listen to some slightly more accessible bands and come back to it. It will be well worth the listen.