Saturday, June 23, 2012
Necrovation - Necrovation
Necrovation's humble beginnings showed no differentiation from all the other Swedish death metal bands that consumed the scene as they played a generic brand of old school Swedish death metal, complete with all the typical traits; buzzsaw guitars, chubby tones and hardcore-tinged crust attacks. But their self titled tide is no meager gimmick, and it almost seems as very few of the traits on the previous recorded have been bequeathed, and left me in confusion. ''Swedish Death Metal'' is an understatement for the eponymous Necrovation release, a dark, looming apparition born of the shadowy tides shown at the cover art, proving to be a magnificent churning of technicality, surpassing efficiency, crushing all the rules that were laid down by masters like Entombed, Unleashed or Grave, thus renewing the spirit of death metal as we know it, creating a fresh area for the genre to spawn and rejuvenate. Yes, it has only been four years in between two releases, yet the changes are dramatic, and it feels as if the band has aged near ten years.
Necrovation's self titled album is a major departure from their previous sound, so it's basically departing from the generic ''Swedeath'' territory as well. This album is eclectic, and you can notice that from its every move and from all the elements used to create its formula. I can name a vast array of influences that I found effective during the construction of the album; a strong feeling for the old sound is still present borrowing some attributes from Tormented and Tribulation especially, but besides those, there's a keen focus on some more technical details that many tend to omit such as ''Deception Ignored'' era Deathrow, hinted in the usage of queer notes and semi-technical melodies, showing a rather perverse attitude while compared to other Swwdish death acts, some Revenant slithering through the general flow of the record (especially in the vocals), and maybe even some Death circa ''Human'' as the flux of melodic thrums and solos often remind me of Chuck Shuldiner's blazing leads. These are some influences I could think of, but it's obvious that Necrovation have conjured their own sound besides those.
Atmosphere is not the right word to describe the spectral feeling that dominates you while the guitars and drums rage and collide in the background. It's more of a feeling, a dark, gloomy feeling, but to make a long story short, it's beautiful, and sinister in the right way, without mutilating the function of the record. The guitar tone is something else on its own, thin, metallic, chilling, yet still maintaining density throughout; it cuts deeper than an executioner's blade, but it's lighter and swifter than needle while it plunges into the flesh of the listener. It's no easy job to avoid the eerie rasps of the vocals, dispersing in a bleak, dark aura not over but in the back of the riffs, muffled and distorted yet still very vivacious and savage, no different than any sort of classic Swedeath vocal work. All in all, the technical prowess and togetherness of the music is perfectly balanced as each piece of the puzzle fits right in, and it is not feasible to construct such a dark monolith.
The level of queerness is parallel to the level of innovation and eccentricity, and whether it be the sudden changes of tempos, varied chugs, bizarre melodies engulfing the record or the most interesting piece of acoustic interludes and symphonic instrumentals found on ''The Transition'', these record is incredibly original and proficient, and in my eye, it's a collection of odd compositions embracing the bleak, dark aura of death metal, with lots of derivation, and it's near perfect. Such assorted diversity hasn't been offered to me by any band this year, and I'm extremely content with the brilliance of this album. A mixture of anxiety, confusion and wonder surrounds me while I listen to this. You will no doubt awe as I did, even if you won't like it.
Dark Lead Dead
Ill Mouth Madness (The Many)