Friday, April 27, 2012

Undergang- Til Døden os Skiller(2012)

Undergang- Til Døden os Skiller

Til Døden os Skiller, the follow up to the incredibly brilliant Indhentet Af Døden, had it's work cut out for it. Indhentet Af Døden was basically perfect: a brilliant mix of Rottrevore's slimey, gut-chewing down tempo madness and the unhinged strangeness of Finnish masters such as Depravity and Demilich; played with incredible energy and featuring some of the best Death Metal production one could ask for. Til Døden os Skiller was fighting an uphill battle from the beginning.

And it lost.

Til Døden os Skiller just doesn't stack up to Indhentet Af Døden in, well, any real way. It's a far more subdued, straightforward effort with a somewhat slicker production that while still energetic and heavier than sin, doesn't feel like the labor of love and violence that Indhentet Af Døden did.  It's always controversial to compare a bands previous work to their newest material, and often even a bit unfair.  But when a band is sticking to a similar style from album to album, it's impossible to not compare a bands albums to each other. But this doesn't make Til Døden os Skiller a bad record at all: Undergang simply cannot make a bad record, as their sound is just too brutal and too massive to ever be boring.  It's just disappointing to hear a band regress and become more digestible and safe.

The first thing that stands out about Til Døden os Skiller is how much more subdued the song-writing is: while much of the Rottrevore-meets-Asphyx heaviness remains in tact, songs follow much simpler paths and rarely engage in the odd, creepy sounding progressions that made Indhentet Af Døden such a powerful release.  It's still insanely heavy, and at times groovy: "Ormeorgie" is a headbangers paradise, featuring a dozen skull-smashing riffs and plenty of Doom-laden goodness.  The following track, "Når Børnene Dør" starts weakly with a poor sample(an issue which appears constantly on the album), but once the song gets going it's all very musty and death-laden.  Til Døden os Skiller feels like a slightly faster album than Indhentet Af Døden did, with more moments of blast-beat domination, but don't expect Undergang to enter Angelcorpse territory; things stay slow and mid-paced throughout, but the diversity of tempo is always a nice thing.  Vocalist David Torturdod remains consistently underwhelming though: his weak growl sounds gassed and is usually lost in the shuffle, although his higher-register vocal sounds powerful and dripping.  It's a shame he doesn't use it more often.

As I said before, Undergang in their current incarnation are likely incapable of releasing anything that isn't appealing to most Death Metal fans, as there just are not a lot of primitive, Rottrevore inspired bands floating around.  Til Døden os Skiller is perfectly listenable, enjoyable, and at times even a bit dynamic.  But those moments of "what the fuck am I listening to?" that dominated Indhentet Af Døden , those moments when the band would break out in a Suffocation style breakdown like on "Dødshymne" or the odd, bouncy and almost happy intro of "Evigt Lidende," are just not to be found here.  Undergang have taken a much more accessible, simplistic approach to songwriting on Til Døden os Skiller, and it shows in a somewhat inferior album.  And album I would still recommend, but not the one I was hoping for.

Rating: 7.5/10

No comments:

Post a Comment