Dismember - Dismember
What death metal fan hasn't heard of Dismember? Not me, that's for sure. But for all of the praise I've heard their early albums given, I have never found the chance or time to sit down with one of them. Or any of them for that matter, until now. This is their obligatory "we're an old band so it'll look hip if we self-title our new album" self-titled album, released in February on Regain Records. What's on the plate for us metalheads?
Melo-death, sounding like a logical combination of the Gothenburg sound and more traditional Scandinavian death metal, with moments of thrash and black metal. They've got a great, time-worn sound, a sound that you know has come from years and years and years of playing, experimenting and learning what it takes to write good metal. What strikes as surprising across the album is Dismember's knack at sticking an ear-catching melody right in between moments of pure brutality; this is something most metal needs for variety but can become obviously mundane if overdone. Thankfully, they inject equal amounts of both to create some great metal songs. Most of them, anyway. The latter half of the album drags due to the similar nature of all the songs, but between the pure intensity of "Death Conquers All", "Under a Blood Red Sky", my personal favorite "The Hills Have Eyes" and "Tide of Blood", you'll be more than rewarding for taking a chance on the album.
Pure and classic death metal it's not, but honest and agressive it is. Props to Dismember for solid songwriting, some nice solos and, overall, a well-rounded collection of melodic death metal songs. I'll have to see what they've done before this to get a better grasp on their importance and history, this album's definitely whetted my appetite.
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