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Exhumed/Gruesome - Twisted Horror

Exhumed/Gruesome
Twisted Horror
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 15 July 2020, 12:46 PM

Another inheritance of the 80’s that is used until this time is the Split albums. It is, as the name states, a split between two (or even three) bands. On vinyl golden age, it was pressed with one band on one side of the LP, and the other band on the another side. Today, it’s usual to see on Split albums material that wasn’t used on the bands’ releases, as Demo material or even leftovers. And here is a split between the bands EXHUMED and GRUESOME, “Twisted Horror”, a piledriving release that will blast your ears off.

Both bands shares the same musical features: a brutal and massive form of Death Metal heavily influenced by Old School insight. In other words: brutal, fast and oppressive, but even with some nasty Thrash Metal influences (remember: SLAYER’s “Reign in Blood” is an important album for Death Metal). Of course that can be found remnants of DEATH and POSSESSED early releases, but it seems that both bands shares the same sick energy and noisy hooks. Be welcome to the slaughterhouse!

The impressive feature is that both bands use a very good sound quality. It is a blasting and aggressive update on what was done on Morrisound studios in the 90’s, to that nasty and brutal sonority, but in a way that a dummy can understand what is being played. But it seems that both bands use the most natural and simple instrumental tunes possible, in a way that fits on what they want of their music. Both bands had the same quality level on their sonorities.

There are five songs, all of them being extremely good. “Buried to Die” uses a nasty and fast approach (with some blast beats) and nice contrasts between guttural grunts. The same approach appears on “Rot Your Brain”, where the early Thrash Metal elements can be heard on the guitars. A massive and brutal torpedo into the ears if “Dead Deader Deadest”, fast and aggressive, but with a very good technical work presented by bass guitar and drums. These are the songs from EXHUMED, show the power of these veterans.

The things start to show more rhythmic shifts during “Led Into the Dark”, another very good performance from the vocals and guitars (the sickening solo is really good, an example of how Kerry King and Jeff Hanemann playing were important for Death Metal consolidation). And that influences from DEATH’s “Leprosy” bloom on “A Mind Decayed”, with its solid rhythm and some slow parts. These ones show the strength of GRUESOME.

It’s not a perfect release, but “Twisted Horror” really belongs to that kind that inspires the fans to hear it repeatedly.

Musicianship: 8
Songwriting: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Exhumed - Buried to Die
2. Exhumed - Rot Your Brain
3. Exhumed - Dead Deader Deadest
4. Gruesome - Led Into the Dark
5. Gruesome - A Mind Decayed
Lineup:
EXHUMED

Matt Harvey - Vocals, Guitars
Ross Sewage - Vocals, Bass
Sebastian Phillips - Guitars
Mike Hamilton - Drums

GRUESOME

Matt Harvey - Vocals, Guitars
Daniel Gonzalez - Guitars
Robin Mazen - Bass
Gus Rios - Drums
Record Label: Relapse Records
     


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