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Grave – Out of Respect for the Dead

album by:
Grave

Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On October 6, 2015
Last modified:October 6, 2015

Summary:

Grave's Out of Respect for the Dead is a blistering Swedish death metal marathon through nine tunes, which pounds, grooves, and snaps necks mercilessly.

Grave - album cover art

Sweden’s long-running death metal stalwart act, Grave, has returned with an aggressive, pummeling new album, titled Out of Respect for the Dead. The disc is a blistering marathon through nine tunes, ranging from mid-length to a nine-plus minute epic.

Recorded, mixed, and mastered at the modern, digital Studio Soulless, Out of Respect for the Dead sports a clear, deep mix and plenty of punch. Songs are crisp, and have not fallen victim to the loudness war – cymbal color, bass nuance, mix depth, and vocal grit are all still on-show. Even at lower listening volumes, Grave’s latest disc impresses. What fans adore about the ‘mildly updated’ Stockholm death metal sound is all here: a mid-paced wall of sound, a buzzsaw guitar riff factory, a malicious vocal, a rattling rumble of a bass guitar, a pounding drum line.

Instrumentation is de facto for death metal, and that’s a really good thing, in the capable hands of Grave. It’s no-frills here: vocals, guitars, bass guitar, and drums make up the core sound. A thrilling ride through Swedish death metal, Out of Respect for the Dead upholds the old values, with a slightly updated sound, mostly in the speed of the drumming. Typically malevolent vocals growl, howl, and rage across tracks. Lyrics are semi intelligible at first listen, and definitely understandable with repeated, detailed listens. Grave show listeners again that they’re a killer rhythm guitar riff factory, where lots of the ideas translate well to their intent. Some songs have harmony or dual guitar lines, or blazing dual-part guitar solos. While not what we’d call virtuosic, they are definitely discordant and definitely wailing, which fits the tunes perfectly. The bass guitar lends a rumbling, ominous, foundational low end. Drums race, plod, gallop, and roll along with a near-unstoppable momentum.

Downtuned and dissonant, Out of Respect for the Dead is filled with strong songs, so it’s difficult to pick out highlights. Plenty of variety in the intros, outros, bridges, and rhythmic accents, shows careful attention to songcraft details. The deliberately dilapidated ending in “Flesh Before My Eyes” underscores the difference between purposeful filth as a songwriting accent, and poor musicianship; this band can play their respective butts off, and this ending adds some drama to an already exciting tune. “Plain Pine Box” almost crushes you with its intro. It also features a wailing, curvy, bendy guitar solo that smashes right into the second verse. It’s a groove-based tune, a neck-snapper for sure. “Out Of Respect For The Dead” is a downtuned wall of sound, replete with bark-growling, intimidating vocals. “The Ominous “They”‘”s bass line, following the lyrical break just over halfway through the tune, is set at double-time against the guitar line. This subtle effort makes the bass nicely audible and punchy, eating right through a soup of guitars, vocals, and drums. “Redeemed Through Hate” is an adventure through death metal tone-land, with lots of little flourishes for someone listening closely. There’s a dramatic, creepy segue between “Redeemed Through Hate” and “Deified”. “Grotesque Glory” is a nine minute long, doom-laden, epic jaunt through Grave’s various tines, tempos, rhythms, and riffs.

Out of Respect for the Dead has so many of the elements that fans have come to know and appreciate from Grave. It pounds, it grooves, and it’ll snap your neck and walk away without so much as a parting glance. Vicious Swedish extreme metal done right, this raging slab is recommended for fans of the genre, new and old, and for fans of well-crafted death metal in general.

Track listing:
Intro / Mass Grave Mass
Flesh Before My Eyes
Plain Pine Box
Out Of Respect For The Dead
The Ominous “They”
Redeemed Through Hate
Deified
Trail Of Ungodly Trades
Grotesque Glory

Band lineup:
Ola Lindgren – Guitar / Vocals
Mika Lagren – Guitar
Tobias Cristiansson – Bass
Ronnie Bergstal – Drums

Links:
Official Band Website
Official Band Facebook Page
Official Band Twitter Page

 

Grave's Out of Respect for the Dead is a blistering Swedish death metal marathon through nine tunes, which pounds, grooves, and snaps necks mercilessly.

About Iris North

My formal position is: editor and music reviewer. I joined the PlanetMosh army in 2012. I enjoy extreme metal, 'shred' guitar, hard rock, prog rock, punk, and... silly pop music!