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Exhumed "Death Revenge" Album Review!

Matt Harvey's been a very, very busy man recently. With his DEATH-inspired death metal band GRUESOME, along with his grind supergroup EXPULSION, it's hard to fathom how he has any time to squeeze a new EXHUMED album into the mix. Newest album "Death Revenge" throws the band into new territory with a concept album, of all things. Inspired by events concerning brutal murders, grave robbery, and the underground trading of dead bodies, the tracks evolve around 1820's Edinburgh, Scotland. And unlike previous EXHUMED albums, some gothic orchestrations appear throughout and inbetween tracks, weaving their way amidst the brutal grind tracks we've come to love.

The non-metal tracks sound like they could easily fit on any MIDNIGHT SYNDICATE album.

After the 'Death Revenge Overture', 'Defenders From the Grave' blasts its wondrous way into our ears with the usual excellent riffs by Harvey and Bud Burke. The thrumming basslines of Ross Sewage and machine-gun drumming of Mike Hamilton complete the mix. Harvey's growling and snarling are as cadaverous as ever. 'Lifeless' sounds like the dead coming back to life. The furious guitar/drum attack is typical EXHUMED, a blistering, blathering, repulsive array of pure energy. Next track 'Dead End' is more of a steady pace with twin guitars and unstoppable fury. If there's one thing I've learned from a high-energy EXHUMED show, it's that you simply fucking can't stand still. And the album "Death Revenge" mirrors that idea. 'Night Work' doesn't let up with the swarming apostasy of musical throttling. 'Unspeakable' makes you feel like you're running for your life. After an interlude of orchestration, just enough time to catch your breath, you lose it again with 'The Harrowing', mixing screeching vocals with guttural, throat-ripping murmurs. If you need a slower track to help you recover, you won't get it with 'A Funeral Party'. 'Incarnadined Hands' is a violent, ladder-like riffing with brutal vocals to scare the shit out of small children. And 'Death Revenge' is pure old-school Exhumed to the hilt. The album ends with 'A Lesson In Violence', an EXODUS cover that fits right in with the rest of the blood-drenched album.

While some bands ruin their album with interludes, EXHUMED, with their concept album, fit the tracks in nicely, complimenting the brutality like sweets and salt. This may be a slight departure for the band. but they certainly don't disappoint. Between all of Matt's projects, we really never have to wait long for our fix of his metal masterpieces. And thank God for that.

David Simonton

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