There’s virtually nothing that hasn’t already been done within the death metal scene that hasn’t been heard before, which means that sometimes it’s hard for a band to really make its mark without being labelled as simply a carbon copy of something that’s been done elsewhere, and more often than not so much better. But every now and then an act will come along and release an album that offers nothing new, but still manage to amaze with their sheer enthusiasm and dedication to the idols.
One act that falls into the latter category is Queretaro (Mexico) based outfit Zombiefication, who have just released their debut full-length effort ‘Midnight Stench’.
Comprising of Mr. Jacko (Otherwise known as Jacobo Córdova, and who’s the mastermind behind Majestic Downfall and Ticket To Hell), Mr. Hitch (Arthur Axegrinder of Inhearted and Rapture) and session musicians (Guitarists Mr. Kim and
Mr. John and drummer Mr. Rebellion), Zombiefication is a project that came together with the sole intention of making pure death metal music, with a focus on a sound that was in the vein of old-school legends such as Entombed and Dismember, and a lyrical prose that primarily revolves around a loose conceptual story of a possessed priest who uses the bible to resurrect the dead, and the battle that ensues between the undead and angels sent from heaven to set things right. It’s hardly a new concept, and one that’s quite familiar within today’s death metal scene. But unlike others that have attempted such a feat, Zombiefication have well and truly achieved their objective on ‘Midnight Stench’.
After a brief scene setting instrumental (‘The Shining’), Zombiefication get straight down to business in a truly destructive manner with ‘Cryptic Broadcast’. The band’s sound is harsh and raw, and definitely unrefined. But beneath the brazen exterior, there are some great riffs here and there and a real power that emerges from the individual performances (In particular on the vocal and drum front) that really give the song that something special.
Faster paced efforts such as ‘Anthem To The Deathmarch’, ‘Broken Gravestone’ and ‘Necrolumbatory’ provide plenty of variation in pace alongside mid-paced efforts such as ‘Last Resting Place’, the full-on assault of ‘Jacko’s Funeral Pyre’ and the doom-like ‘Sleepless Matter’, while on the closing pair of ‘Hitchcock Screaming In Phobia’ and ‘The Early Years’, the duo save their best for last, with the two tracks standing out as the strongest on the album.
Zombiefication aren’t going to win anyone over with their originality, but they will certainly capture the attention of those who long for the old-school Swedish death metal sound in all its gory glory. ‘Midnight Stench’ might be a nostalgic release, but it sure as hell is a fun listen as well.
For more information on Zombiefication, check out - http://www.zombiefication.com/
© Justin Donnelly