More HM-2 peda-driven death metal for you. I know, I know. Everyone is using it now...but not everyone is using it well. The Czech Republic's Brutally Deceased, however, have done their homework. Their latest album, Satanic Corpse, through Doomentia Records runs perfectly alongside the Swedish death metal classics. Formed in 2007 and worshiping all the right influences, this is a particularly brutal slice of melodeath that isn't afraid to show where they come from.
If you dig those Carcass riffs and Gothenburg a la early In Flames, Satanic Corpse may be the perfect album for you. I don't come across too many albums in this style that pull off this sound anymore. Most melodic death bands have either ventured into more modern, technical/progressive territories or withered with subpar rehashings, but not Brutally Deceased. These guys manage to nail the aesthetic perfectly from the epic harmonies to the slightly gritty production. Those dueling guitars at the end of "At One With The Dead" are especially satisfying; drawing on Iron Maiden just as much as the Swedes.
And as long as we are on the topic of other influences, there is a slight twist here in the vocals. While the guitars and frequent D-beats are straight outta Stockholm, the growls are far more brutal. Best compared to bands from the early Florida DM scene, these throat-ripping growls, grunts, and snarls give Cannibal Corpse a run for their money. I feel like a few high screeches might be in order to vary up the performance a bit more, but the never-ending onslaught of hooks make up for it. Besides, we don't want everyone to sound like either Dark Tranquillity or The Black Dahlia Murder; I admire that Brutally Deceased have made a sound that is their own.
Definitely several standout tracks on this one: "Hostile Earth" would have fit perfectly on Heartwork, Wages of Sin, or The Jester Race. More stellar harmonies all over this cut. "Epoch of Self Denial" and "Where No Gods Dare" sport relentless tremolos and deliciously shredded solos. Finally, "Withstanding the Funeral" belts out more catchy melodies in under 2 minutes than some could in 10. This album leaves me feeling super nostalgic for the early days of my metal journey. Gothenburg was definitely a gateway into the extreme for me, and I am glad that there are still a few bands around to shine that light. Stanic Corpse drops this Friday.