Monday, January 2, 2012

Entrails - The Tomb Awaits

The Tomb Awaits
F.D.A. Rekotz

Despite having formed around the time that the Swedish death metal movement was really starting to take shape (In other words, around 1990), and disbanding around 1998, Växjö based act Entrails is notably absent from Swedish death metal history, primarily because the band never officially released anything in their whole existence. Not surprisingly, guitarist/founder Jimmy ‘Bloodspill’ Lundqvist was disappointed with the band’s lack of success in the recording studio, and after a ten year absence from the scene, decided to finally give the band’s music justice by resurrecting an entirely new line-up and unleashed their independently released ‘Reborn’ demo in 2008.
In the years since, Entrails have seemingly been trying to make up for lost time, with their second demo ‘Human Decay’ (Again, independently released) emerging in 2009, and their first official full-length album ‘Tales From The Morgue’ finally seeing the light of day in 2010. With as little as sixteen months since the release of their debut, Entrails (Who comprise of Lundqvist, vocalist/bassist Jocke Svensson, guitarist Mathias Nilsson and new drummer/backing vocalist Adde Mitroulis) are back with their latest effort ‘The Tomb Awaits’.
As expected, Entrails haven’t strayed too far from where they last left listeners on their debut, with ‘The Tomb Awaits’ sounding very much like a long lost classic from Sweden’s early death metal era – meaning that essentially this is another album that worships the sound pioneered by Entombed and Grave, and later revisited by Bloodbath. With a sound and direction that’s entrenched in death metal’s glorious past, you could hardly describe Entrails as anything remotely original. But despite this, Entrails do manage to entertain listeners with ‘The Tomb Awaits’ more often than not.
Unlike a lot of instrumental opening tracks, the title track ‘The Tomb Awaits’ is quite well done and a little different from the same old themes done by most, and compliments the Hell the band unleash with their follow up effort ‘Unleashed Wrath’.
The band utilize some slower tempos and melodic riffing within ‘Crawling Death’ to great effect, while a guest vocal appearance from death metal legend Dan Swanö and the different sounding guitar solos on ‘Eaten By The Dead’ is other high moment on the album.
Elsewhere, tracks such as ‘Undead’ (Another fine example of the guitarists providing solos that are a more thought out and melodic than expected), ‘End Of All Existence’ (Which features a guest guitar solo contribution from Ola Amoeba Death), the re-recording of ‘Total Death’ (From their ‘Human Decay’ demo) and the crushing closer ‘Unspeakable Obscenities’ are the pick of the remainder.
Entrails are a far cry from what you would seriously consider original in terms of their song writing, and their sound is a throwback to a bygone era. But despite their obvious flaws, Entrails are good at what they do, and at the very least, ‘The Tomb Awaits’ is a good old-fashioned death-like blast from the past – Swedish style.

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© Justin Donnelly