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Swedish death metal is alive and well... everywhere else

To Scandinavia and beyond!

You’ve got to hand it over to Leif Cuzner (RIP)... Nihilist’s first guitarist would have probably never have guessed that a quarter of a century later, his own guitar setting – a lethal combination of a B tuning, the Boss ‘Heavy Metal’ effect pedal and all his Marshall amps knobs turned up to the max – would still that damn popular. Yes, Left Hand Path was released waaaaay back in 1989 but no matter how harmless most of the current death metal scene sounds like these days, that specific ‘buzzsaw guitar’ sound is still alive and well, ready to ruin everybody’s party – both in its home country (Gluttony, Paganizer, Demonical, Entrails, Interment, Puteraeon etc.) but also abroad, in such un-Swedish countries as Italy (Horrid, Undead Creep, Profanal), USA (Terminate, Acephalix), Spain (Graveyard), Finland (Winterwolf, Torture Pulse), Poland (Incarnated) Mexico (Denial, Putrefact, Zombiefication) and so on. Hence this non-exhaustive list of five of the most recent Swedeath bands that actually are not from Sweden that caught up Hammer's ears lately…

Brutally Deceased

Home Country: Czech Republic

Date Of Birth: 2007

Latest Release: Their second full-length, Black Infernal Vortex (2014)

Level Of Swedishophily: To the max! They specifically decided from the get-go to play old-school Swedish death metal and thus, picked up the title of an old Grave classic from their Into The Grave album to underline it. No wonder they put out a split CD with Interment last year. Their vocalist Michal Žlababa Štěpánek admits though that even if “lately more and more bands seemed to incorporate it to the point of becoming annoying, we still love that typical early 90's Swedish style. It’s so massive, nasty and dirty! This being said, even if our debut album (Dead Lovers’ Guide) was very classic-sounding, our latest stuff is more diverse so don’t get fooled by that typical guitar buzz, there is more than meets the eyes.” 

Michal's First Swedeath Album: “Although it’s not a very death metal album, I’d say Entombed’s To Ride, Shoot Straight And Speak The Truth in 1996.”

Michal's Favourite Swedeath Album: “Dismembers’ Like An Everflowing Stream, whose opening song Override Of The Overture we covered on our first album.”

Why Should You Care? Having their roots in both the brutal death metal (Heaving Earth) and the grind scene (Jig-Ai, Negligent Collateral Collapse), those youngsters are hungry for blastbeats and in-your-face brutality, they’ve come up on Black Infernal Vortex with a sound that is a tad more advanced than one could think. 

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Home Country: Malaysia

Date Of birth: 2008

Latest Release: Their debut album, Morbid Terror

Level Of Swedishophily: Average. The guitar sound is here and they used the same cover artist as Entrails did for their last album, but vocalist Muntah Darah has a different, more screaming type of rasp and the band claims to be as much influenced by classic Swedish death metal that they are by Obituary or Malevolent Creation for instance, even if that’s less obvious. Darah confesses that their weird choice of moniker has nothing to do with the EP of the same name from ’94 by long forgotten Swedish act Wombbath, though. Despite the fact Lavatory are probably the only band from that part of the world playing a genre created thousand of miles away in Scandinavia in the late 80s, he stresses out that their country’s underground music scene is “so small in size compared to what’s happening in Europe. Still, the concept of a new band coming from one of the least metal-friendly places in Asia playing Scandinavian old-school death metal with an added Eastern dramatic feeling, pentatonic scales and lyrics filled with evil, grief and suffering is a good way to challenge your idea of what a stereotypical band is.” 

Muntah's First Swedeath Album: “I can’t remember if it was either Dismember’s Indecent And Obscene or Entombed’s Left Hand Path to tell you the truth”

Muntah's Favourite Swedeath Album: “There are so many of them but I guess I’d have to go for Left Hand Path simply because it’s the one album that really inspired us to form this band.”

Why Should You Care? Well for a start how many extreme metal bands from Malaysia do you actually know, eh? So the concept of seeing twenty-something dudes from the other side of the planet performing a form of music rooted in Stockholm frozen in time in 1989 alone should be enough. But to be fair, exotic factor aside, there’s more to Lavatory than this. 

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