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Ribspreader - Crawl and Slither

Crawl and Slither
by Chris Hawkins at 29 July 2019, 7:59 PM

Swedish Death Metal.  What more can be said of it?  In fact, entire books have been written on the locally produced, now truly international genre.  Split between the Gothenburg and Stockholm areas, the sound is respectively divided between an emphasis on melody and brutality.  Bands across the world have evolved based on the sounds that were released from these two metallic epicenters.  RIBSPREADER, now releasing their eighth full-length, “Crawl and Slither,” continue to proliferate the raw, fist-pumping side of Swedish Death Metal.  The sound is cavernous, expansive, and a most welcome bludgeoning catharsis.

Rogga Johansson who handles guitar, bass and vocals, has a seemingly inexhaustible well from which he draws inspiration for his songwriting.  His absolutely slamming recent solo album, “Entrance to the Otherwhere,” was just released some ten days ago.  I reviewed it recently for Metal Temple and was thus shocked to see his name appear yet again on material to review.  How does one have so many riffs and endless creativity?  Compared to his solo album, this material is decadently efficacious in its summoning of the more primal, devastatingly ribald side of Death Metal.

The album is the epitome of lean and mean.  From the onset with “Breeder of the Dead,” the ears rejoice with the resounding chainsaw guitars.  The HM-2 pedal is lethal and in full effect throughout the album.  In third place, the title track has a decidedly ENTOMBED feel.  Of course, this sound is more related to “Left Hand Path” than their later Death ‘N Roll material though one can hear a bit of MOTORHEAD’s fury latent in the spirit of some of these songs.

The songwriting effectively offers a selection of the finest of riffs.  Songs like the fifth track, “Maggotman,” display the sublimely judicious chord selection.  Unlike some bands that try to fill every possible space with notes, RIBSPREADER know when to lay back and let the thunderous chords ring out.  Being tuned so low, this technique is far more effective as the articulation is accurately preserved.  The following track, “Time Heals Only Flesh,” showcases an even more capacious sound with its use of a truly twisted, crusty bass sound.  When placed against the voluminous guitar sound, it is solid Swedish Death Metal magic.

If the reader agrees that BLOODBATH is far more enjoyable than practically anything from KATATONIA’s discography, then this album is highly recommended.  RIBSPREADER is not trying to reinvent the genre as they are a finely-tuned entity excelling at their niche.  Lucky for purists, there is no sign of them slowing down.  Pick this album up for some truly crushing, devastating Swedish Death Metal.

Songwriting:  7
Originality:  6
Memorability:  7
Production: 8


3 Star Rating

1. Breeder of the Dead
2. Horrid Ascension
3. Crawl and Slither
4. Dead Reign Rotting
5. Maggotman
6. Time Heals Only Flesh
7. Cauterized and Lobotomized
8. A Night to Dismember
9. Blödarsjuk
Rogga Johansson – Bass, Guitars, Vocals
Jeramie Kling – Drums
Taylor Nordberg – Guitars (lead)
Record Label: HPGD Productions


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Edited 02 December 2022

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