Decomposed: Devouring

Swedish death metal has had its score of greats, and we need not mention any of them here because it would just be pretentious.  Probably yawnsome, too, and we keep it underground, so underground.  Decomposed started out with a huge leap of faith, naming themselves with such an obvious term, one already taken by at least a dozen other bands throughout the world.  So let’s look at this objectively.  You’ve got the first element mixed into our alchemical death metal stew, ‘Sweden’.  Good start, a fair beginning.  The next to toss in is ‘obvious band name.’  But imagine your surprise when the resulting concoction is actually pretty damn good, and it doesn’t really need anything more than what it gives at face value.  They can be known as Decomposed (SWE) without much annoyance, though honestly if it gets beyond that it might be time for a revisitation of the dictionary.  Some people out there have a problem with retro movements in metal.  But thrash and death metal are probably the two easiest genres to pull it off with, as evidenced by the slew of bands of this type in the past five years.  Really, what’s wrong with doing it?  If you want to play it classic and do it well, who cares?  Sometimes certain things need to be just enjoyed as they are, and we need to stop caring so much about our loins exploding from all of the experimentation that never even happens anyway.

For an album title so ready to lose itself in the mire of death metal monotony, Devouring does a surprising job of catching your attention.  Decomposed keep their riffs accessible and fetid, with the production at a higher level than the old days when it all sounded like pounding on cardboard.  They also avoid diluting it with too much technicality, and keep it darker than usual.  Opening with the title track, you’re soon invited into familiar territory.  Chords, tremolo, pounding drums, low roars, it’s a generally cut-and-dry approach to death metal.  So what’s with the score then, you ask?  Well, it’s simple, Decomposed excel at their songwriting, they don’t waste your time, or theirs.  The majority of the tracks have something about them that sticks, some more than others obviously, like the awesome ender “Decomposition,” which easily tears with its simple, depressing main lines near the end.  Further, they do all this without really losing the listener in too much similarity.  Each song sounds different, and as a whole they present themselves rather well with no need for unnecessary flutterings and stupidity.

That being said, Devouring is most certainly not going to do anything new for you.  It’s like cold pizza, it tastes just fine, awesome even, but it’s not as fresh as it could have been.  Sometimes, yes, we like it dripping, warm, oozing with freshness.  This, well, it’s just fine, but it’s nothing you’re going to find in the least bit unique.  That’s why we kept it banal and used a food analogy to explain.  Take basically any good Incantation riff, slow it down a tad, and you could probably piece them together to create this album.  However, Decomposed manage to retain your attention through the listen, and that in itself is commendable, because there are plenty of bands in death metal today who do the same old, sound old, smell old, look old, dress old, marry old, have kids old, but yet somehow are only about a year old.  There’s nothing new to be found here, but Devouring still serves up several awesome pieces, especially that ender, and it’s certain to give any death metal fan a good listen without pocket regrets.  These guys don’t waste their time trying to be something they’re not, and they don’t waste your time writing things that probably shouldn’t have been written.  Solid, and awesome art as well.

Decomposed Official Facebook

Written by Stanley Stepanic

Decomposed: Devouring
Memento Mori
4 / 5

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