The promo pack wasn't lying when it said these guys are bringing back the Tampa sound of the 90's.There is not a direct band that you can point a finger at when it comes to their influences. One moment you hear Deicide, one moment Morbid Angel, another Cannibal Corpse. They tend to forsake the finesse that Morbid Angel began to employ after "Covenant". The opening song runs you over like Deicide's Legion album did."Moist Purple Skin" implies lyrical these guys are tapping the same vein as Cannibal Corpse. The volcanic belch to the chorus, is pretty fist pumping, you'll be back in camo shorts in no time and probably more crazy about this if you never took them off.
Death metal fans might appreciate an album that is devoid of all black metal trappings. There is nothing black about this. It holds much more in common with thrash. On a song like "Death Glance" this fact is up in your face with the double bass. Imitation might be the sincerest form of flattery, but these guys can craft some pretty mean riffs on their own. They slow things down without coping any Obituary on "Unrestrained". The charm of chanting the title of the song as the chorus starts to wear thin by this time. Despite this sound they are not form Tampa, but Sweden and some of the members have played with October Tide and Katatonia, so not their first rodeo here.
Their decadent punishment sometimes pays off on songs like "Without Motive'". The classic metal roots of death metal shine through here. The secret to death metal that works is for the vocal hook to work like gears in a machine against the guitar. These guys are well aware of this and make those elements fall into on frequent basis even if they are not reinventing the wheel here. The simple chug of "Rotting Below" is still effective, even though they are defaulting to multi tracked chants, combining the winning elements of Cannibal Corpse and Deicide.This does get almost to formulaic and simplistic for me, but I appreciate the fact these guys are so good at what they do. Yet the formula finally gets stale and is ready to be buried on "Dead Buried and Forgotten". They pick up the pace on what has been a largely mid tempo album on the closing song. The vocal accents also seemed a little rushed here, so maybe barking at this speed is not the vocalists' forte.
This album is a lot of fun, nothing I take too seriously, this era of death metal I liked as a kid, and I like death metal, but my tastes had not remained in stasis. still this deserves a 7, the one dimensional nature of this sort of thing.