A lot has to be said of bands that, after an almost twenty year absence, decide to reform and release albums. This is particularly true of the Swedish death metal scene, where numerous bands have resurfaced over the years. Of these bands, Evocation and in this very case, Entrails have risen from the ashes and are about to set the world on fire with this release, World Inferno. Entrails (isn’t that a brilliant name for a band?) were active from 1990-92, then resurrected in 1998 before taking another break. Despite these two periods of writing and playing live, the band never released so much as a demo!
Guitarist Jimmy Lundqvist, in a fit of madness I presume, resurrected from the grave his band Entrails and finally started to record demos in 2009. With a full band now together again, Jimmy and co released another demo that was so good that it earned them a record deal through FDA Records in Germany which finally allowed Entrails to be heard by the masses. Since 2013, Entrails have been signed by the huge independent label Metal Blade, and 2017 brings a new album released by the band.
That being said, there have been troublesome times for Entrails, namely losing the rhythm section of the band from their last album, Obliteration. Jimmy was left with his comrade Penki and they together found Tommy Carlsson and Martin Mikaelsson who play bass/vocals and drums respectively. With the new additions, how has this changed the sound of the band? To put it simply for their fans, Entrails still play Swedish death metal like it was 1990 all over again, resurrecting the old days of unleashing classic album after classic album from the godfathers of the scene. Entrails do not want to be the most original band in the world. They just want to play death f**king metal, the way it was, the way it was meant to be.
World Inferno is the name of the album and is also the name of the first song. After the brief intro, within ten seconds of the song starting, you already have “that” sound with the guitars buzzing and sweeping solos to start things off. Tommy growls his way through the song to maximum effect, giving the vision that he is recording the vocals in the studio with the veins bursting from his head. Talking of the studio, it’s none other than Dan Swano at his Unisound doing the mixing and mastering after being recorded at Jimmy’s own Bloodshed Studio. This is just death metal of 1990 in 2017, where there are no thrills or tinkering with the sound. It’s just straightforward death metal played at its best.
“Serial Murder (Death Squad)” is just pure homage to At The Gates while the next track is my personal favourite “The Soul Collector”, which starts off with a riff reminiscent of the old days. It’s just pure Entombed/Dismember/Grave Worship and follows the template of old with a strong chorus which just gets the listener banging their head in appreciation. This is where Tommy’s voice is at its best in my opinion, especially when growling “Collector of Souls” in the song and this has to rate as a top quality Swedish death metal song of the highest order. Chugging riff after chugging riff, with the drums at mid-pace and just sheer heaviness without blast beats… it’s just sublime.
“The Hour of the Casket” starts with a Bloodbath doom death style riff, with Tommy’s vocals sounding deep and he again puts on a strong performance in the song. The tempo picks up again to mid-paced death metal the brutal way and probably the best solo on the whole of the album for me to coincide with that buzzsaw sound. Think of Left Hand Path and you will see what I mean.
Last song, “The Blood Breed”, brings this album to a close and it is another huge song of Swedish death metal from the late 80s/early 90s and this is always a major plus in my books. Tommy barks his vocals while we are also allowed to hear his bass for the first time throughout the whole of the song. You can’t help but bang your head in acknowledgement to the class on show here, pure death metal untouched by modern twists, the way it was meant to be.
It’s clear who Entrails worship. I hear a dash of the old Bloodbath when they are at their slowest, mixed it with some Grave, add in some Entombed and sprinkle it with Dismember. Entrails then take whatever scraps are left on the table and assemble the art piece by piece to create this beast of a straight forward death metal album. In the brief tenure in the band, Tommy and Martin have fitted right into the band and hopefully maintain a stable line up for years to come if this is anything to show for. Well done guys… you got me grinning from ear to ear and raising my horns in homage to pure straightforward nasty and dirty death metal.
World Inferno is out now