Monday, February 20, 2012

Revel in Flesh - Deathevokation [2012]

Just as there has been a massive thrash revival movement in recent years, so has there been a death metal one, especially one that can be associated with Swedish or d-beat death metal. Some of these bands pay tribute, while others completely rip off the style that monsters like Dismember, Entombed, Grave, and so forth, are highly acclaimed for. Revel in Flesh show to be nothing more and nothing less than the same as the countless numbers of bands alongside them that are now playing in a very similar style. They named themselves after an Entombed song on the mighty “Left Hand Path.” That should tell you a number of things, including give you an almost spot-on idea of what they sound like--only far less monumental.

Scores of other bands in the past few years, including, but not limited to Morbus Chron, Massive Assault, Miasmal, Entrails, and so on, have been unashamedly practically ripping off Swedish death metal and the many merits that it carries. Some of these bands have proved to be far better than others, employing little originality but better and more substantial quality, while others, like Revel in Flesh, have little to nothing to offer us. Certainly their Swedish guitar tone and their inviting death metal songwriting is appealing, but I find myself losing focus after a few songs, due mainly to the fact that this style is so widespread at the moment that you really do have to stand out in some way. This is something that Revel in Flesh do not successfully achieve and while, admittedly, this album has caused my head to bob along more than several times, I have my doubts that about its longevity.

Their guitar sound is very akin to the Swedeath tone, and I’d be lying if I said that there was no variation on this record. It does have its interesting moments, and more importantly, it changes pace often enough so as to keep one’s attention for a good few minutes; but, unfortunately, soon lose it once again. There’s the typical tremolo bursts, the punk-influenced d-beat rhythms, the catchy choruses. What does slightly detach Revel in Flesh from other Swedeath-worshipping bands is that they lean to the more heavy side of things. In addition, there’s quite frequent use of melodies to add to the (what I struggle to call) eerie vibe of the album; something that isn’t always used with these bands. The drums successfully drive the music forward, but they aren’t anything special either. In any case, they’re still not bad. The vocals make use of low growls rather than barks, blood-thirsty and ready to pound on the listener.

Overall, it’s a decent album. It does have its fun and interesting moments, and it has sufficient variation to intrigue the listener and surprise him here and there, but unfortunately it doesn’t match up to some other bands that prove to be of greater magnitude. A decent album nonetheless, and in theory far from bad (having some memorable riffs strewn about); definitely recommended for fans of Swedish death metal.



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