I’m usually a little leery of reissues of only 5 year old death metal albums. I prefer my reissues to be of a more classic musk, and frankly I don’t think there was much released in 2008 that really needed re-issuing. However, along comes the start up UK Label Wretched Decay Records and their re-issue of a Chilean death metal band’s second release, which the band self released back in 2008. And’ I’ll be goddamned if it isn’t really good.
Rather than the more typical, nasty bestial South American tones, Homicide is deeply rooted in US death metal and mix both the classic Tampa sound and the chunkier East Coast sound into something that even 5 years after it was released holds up very well. Of course that’s an ode to the genre’s long standing ageless sound, but with equal parts Suffocation, Cannibal Corpse, Monstrosity, Deicide, Malevolent Creation and other notable, classic USDM acts, as well as non US acts like Sinister and Gorguts, Homicide‘s sound is nostalgic yet modern.
With a nice sonic make over (I can’t compare to the original release), the sound is great, with a nice deep, twangy thrash based bass, thick guitars and deep earthy vocals. But it’s all held together by confident song writing that’s as home in 1993 as it is in 2013. With some Obituary-ish scrawling solos scattered around, the draw of the material is the perfect blend of death metal blasts and grooves. After the intro, “Pull the Strings” sets the tone with a great little steady rumble and a killer, classic groove about 2:49 in. The next 8 songs all deliver the goods with plenty of killer riffs, blasts and lopes. Whether it’s the tempered blasting of ‘Thousand Cuts”, sturdy twang of the Deicide-ish “He Wants Me to Die”, the varied, more technical title track or closer “God Hematophagus” it’s all incredibly well done.
At a perfectly brisk 35 minutes, They Work For Me does everything a death metal album should do, right. I am definitely looking forward to Wretched Decay’s upcoming release of the band’s third, most recent effort Mechanized Torments later on this year.[Visit the band's website]