I have to admit, I’m starting to get a little cranky on this island. My balls are chaffed raw from the sand, I’m sick of eating fish and my mind is playing tricks on me: For example, yesterday I hallucinated that Anna Nicole Smith gave me a Cleveland Steamer.

Still, I’m allowed these CDs though, and this time it’s death metal albums that were simply overlooked, under-rated or under appreciated for whatever reasons. Sure everyone knows of the seminal Entombed, Morbid Angel, Suffocation, Deicide, Dismember, Pestilence, Carcass, Nile and other band’s albums that are widely known and considered certified classics within the death metal pantheons. But here are some albums that while nor genre defining or legendary, are certainly kickass albums in their own right, but for a plethora of circumstances, just seemed to slip under the radar when they were originally released. Some got renewed interest via re-issues, but for the most part, these albums simply did not get the audience they deserved.

Yeah, I knows there’s 11 albums here, but fuck you!-my island, my rules, Wilson!

by Erik T

Accidental SuicideDeceased. (Deaf/Peaceville, 1992)

Released the same year as Autopsy’s Acts of the Unspeakable, Deceased was rightly tagged as an Autopsy clone especially with Ed Jackson’s sick, sick vocals and the overall sense of repugnant, oozing, gore soaked sludge that seeped from every note of the album. Still, even with the blatant plagiarism, tracks like “Misery Hunt” and “To Eat the Heart” are primal, raw, sloppy tracks that highlighted an overlooked album that was competing with the huge death metal explosion happening at the time. Unfortunately Deceased was the band’s only release and none of the members appear to have gone onto anything else, leaving Deceased as their sole, icky, underrated legacy.


God MacabreThe Winterlong. (Mangled Beyond Recognition, 1993)

The Winterlong benefited from a re-issue from Relapse Records back in 2002, and thus garner some of the recognition it deserved albeit a decade later. Unfortunately the album originally came out the same year as the attention stealing style shift of Wolverine Blues and arguably Dismember’s finest hour in Indecent and Obscene. However, armed with a killer Grave-ish Sunlight buzz, a punky, punchy approach to songwriting as highlighted by “Into Nowhere”, “Lost” and “Ashes of Mourning Life” and some haunting if hokey atmospherics (“Teardrops”, ‘Lamentation”, God Macabre were indeed more than a just a Grave clone-their ultimate criticism, and The Winterlong is an absolute must have for any classic Stockholm death metal fan.


GorementThe Ending Quest. (Crypta, 1994)

Much like God Macabre, Gorement were victims of a horrible label and distribution, The Ending Quest was arguably an Earache Records deal away from being considered one of the true classics of death metal. Plying a more raw, atmospheric take on the classic Stockholm sound this Swedish band had a perfect album that quite simply, hardly anyone got to hear when it came out. With an atypical, non Sunlight Sound which was still mid range dominant as well as rough and ready, The Ending Quest was a mix of Nihilist’s demo days, Therion’s … Of Darkness and Afflicted’s Prodigal Sun, just without the record deal, promotion or distribution. Just listen to the likes of “Vale of Tears”,  “The Memorial” or “The Lost Breed” and tell me that isn’t as good as anything else from their peers in that era. Thankfully, Necroharmonic Records re-issued this gem along with some demo tracks back in 2005, so if you are truly looking for a lost gem of classic death metal, The Ending Quest is the definitive example.


IniquitySerenadium. (Emanzipation Productions, 1996)

Though far more known as a more technical, ferocious band with such acclaimed albums as Grime and Five Across the Eyes, Danish death metallers Iniquity released their debut as death popularity metal was started to fade, and the tail end of the Stockholm explosion. And it was the mid ranged fueled, rumbling Stockholm sound complete with injection of cello and synths that Iniquity initially purveyed on this hard to find debut record, that has yet to see any sort of re-issue. Though the band split up in 2004 members continue to be involved in Thorium and Corpus Mortale which both have strains of Iniquity running through their sound. Serenadium was an utterly overlooked classic that belongs in the second tier of Stockholm styled death metal along with Séance, Desultory, Cemetary, God Macabre, Gorement and such.


ViolationBeyond the Graves (Last Episode, 1998)/Moonlight’s Child (Red Stream, 2000).

I’ll admit I only recently stumbled across this German band via a lucky used bin find, but could not find virtually anything on the internet about these two albums, indicating to me they were overlooked when they came out. 1998’s Peter Tägtgren produced Beyond the Graves was a basically a very burly, down-tuned Stockholm meets Gothenburg styled album with some synths sprinkled about and Moonlights Child was a more polished, more keyboard driven, melodic version, but both albums featured strong song writing, great deep vocals and a killer sense of melody and atmosphere. Similar country mates Soul Demise may have lasted longer but Violation were the far better band. Unfortunately, the turn of the decade saw interest in melodic death metal and classic European death metal fade as the genre saturated and the US style of death metal became more popular and Violation’s albums seemed to pass criminally unnoticed, at least on American shores. The band split up after these two albums with members forming the equally obscure thrash band Hellscape. If you see these vastly unheard albums cheap in a bargain bin somewhere like did, GRAB THEM, you won’t be sorry.


CoercionDelete. (Perverted Taste Records, 1999)

Also hailing from Germany, Coercion released two albums in the late 1990s then a sudden EP (Lifework) in 2003 but then promptly disappeared. While hardly spectacular or ground breaking, Coercion were just damn good at mixing a hefty, modern brutality with a classic undercurrent that resulted in a very chunky Danish sound but with some added American “oomph”. Listen to tracks like “Eclipsed”, “Metal Turmoil”, “Delete” or “Life Denied” and tell me that isn’t early Cannibal Corpse mixed with Konkhra.


Council of the FallenRevealing Damnation. (Martyr Music Group, 2002).

Now recently reborn under the moniker Order of Ennead, Florida’s Council of the Fallen delivered what I still consider to this day one of the most blistering American death/black metal records ever. Featuring a then relatively unknown Tim Yeung on drums Revealing Damnation mixed the seething slicing fury of European black metal (“Sense of Purpose”, “Lying In Wait’ “Secrets No Longer”) with lurching death metal (“Remnants of Existence”). To this day (and I’ve given the album many recent listens prepping for my Order of Ennead review and interview), Revealing Damnation holds up really fucking well, and truthfully might be one of the most criminally underrated American metal albums released since 2000.


HypokrasDead & Hungry. (Warpath Records, 2002)

French metal was kicking ass before the current black metal explosion and are Hypokras were proof. Though still active, Dead & Hungry is the band’s only recorded output, which is probably a good thing, as I doubt they can recreate the sheer energy and death/thrash ferocity that careened from the speakers with a sneering reckless and sample laden abandon. Imagine The Crown mixed with Bolt Thrower and Defleshed and you get the likes of “The Cursed Birth”, “Heretik Whores” and “Deceased in Alcoholik Orgasm”. 


I.N.R.IHyper Bastard Breed. (Cold Blood Industries, 2002).

To this day, Hyper Bastard Breed remains one of the most feral, intense and downright savage records I’ve ever reviewed. While certainly bands like Hate Eternal and Origin can outblast and outtech I.N.R.I, Hyper Bastard Breed just thrashed with death metal fervor, pureness and viciousness and the 15 tracks that comprised this album made for 36 minutes of sheer unmitigated, yet somehow catchy, red blooded assault on your ears. Tracks like “Shoot, Hammer and Crush”, “Masturbate”, “Candidate for the Fuck of God” and just killer duo of “Hell is Rising” and “Spawn of Abraham” while never destined to be classic or change the landscape or even garner the same status as The Crown, still simply fucking kills to this day.


PsychotogenThe Calculus of Evil. (Crash Music Inc, 2003)

Even with members of Pessimist in their ranks, Psychotogen somehow got completely overlooked in 2003. Maybe because it was released on Crash Music Inc, or because their were Pessimist members in their ranks, Psychotogen’s second and final album stands as a horribly under rated landmark in technical death metal. While the likes of Spawn of Possession, Origin, Anata, Psycroptic were melting folks brains with their savage skill and precision, Psychotogen were doing it with a Cynic and Death level of intellect and scope added to the complex ferocity, but it pretty much went unnoticed.  Twiddly bass work, serpentine riffs, crushing riffs, deft acoustic instrumentals; everything was in place to make this the next great tech death album from the US, but it just never found its way into the psyche of the metal masses who either wanted something from Europe or something totally brootal. Just listen to “The Gilded Slave”, “Descending” and “Thy Will Be Done” then come back and thank me.



  1. Commented by: Cynicgods

    Wow, some excellent releases lying around in your island, Erik. Accidental Suicide, God Macabre, Gorement, Iniquity and Coercion, great list! I’m going to check out the others to see what I’ve been missing out on.

  2. Commented by: gordeth

    Nice list. Ya know, I think I actually prefer second tier Stockholm death over first tier with Desultory and Gorement being two of my favorite bands of all time.

  3. Commented by: vugelnox

    I know you love that old Sunlight sound so I’ll take these recommendations to heart and check em out

  4. Commented by: vugelnox

    oh and the God Macabre and I.N.R.I. albums DESTROY, total classics, agreed 100% with your thoughts on those

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