Dying Fetus
Infatuation With Malevolence (Reissue)

Regarded as Dying Fetus‘s first ‘real’ release, though not their first album, Infatuation with Malevolence was originally released in 1995 on Wild Rags Records and it compiled two demos: 1993’s Bathe In Entrails and 1994’s Infatuation with Malevolence. Serving as an erstwhile precursor to the bands full-length debut album, 1996’s Purification Through Violence, Infatuation with Malevolence is as brutish and primal as you’d expect from an American death metal band in 1994 called Dying Fetus.

Those familiar with the band’s current iteration might be a little taken aback by the band’s early throes, but make no mistake, even with only one member remaining from their first line-up (John Gallagher- who also played drums on the Bathe in Entrails material), you can instantly hear that this is still Dying Fetus, though, in their…ahem…fetal stages. The obvious comparison is Suffocation and their ilk at the time (notably Pyrexia), with a much more pure East Coast death metal and grindcore tone that focused on a more mid-paced chug, squealing pinch harmonics and hefty grooves. Especially the far more simplistic, more Broken Hope and Cannibal Corpse (tell me “Grotesque Impalement” isn’t Cannibal Corpse influenced) rooted Bathe in Entrails tracks.  One look at the song titles that include the likes of “Tearing Inside the Womb”, “Vomiting the Fetal Embryo”, “Nocturnal Crucifixion”, “Wretched Flesh Consumption” and “Eviscerated Offspring”, also tells you that Gallagher had yet to discover the more social/political (and hardcore) influence that would later be the staple of Dying Fetus‘ modern sound.

What you get with Infatuation with Malevolence is a glimpse into Dying Fetus roots, including the fact that the ultra low guttural vocals that Dying Fetus became synonymous with were actually originally performed by original guitarist Nick Spelos, who was replaced by Brian Latta on the Infatuation With Malevolence demo. He in turn served until Sparky Voyles  replaced him in late 1998. You can hear snippets of the bands later sound in the likes of “Eviscerated Offspring” and ” …And the Weak Shall be Crushed”, but for the most part, it’s pretty standard and primal, if enjoyable, ’90s American death metal.

I never heard the original release, or the original demos, but the nice remaster has made them sound like the other three remastered reissues (Killing on Adrenaline, Purification Through Violence and the Grotesque Impalement EP). With a shiny new cover, informative liner notes from Jason Netherton, three live tracks (including “Skull Fucked”- which has never made it to any studio recording) from the 1998 Blunt Force Records reissue and two demo/rehearsal versions of “Nocturnal Crucifixion” and “Purged of My Worldly Being”, this reissue is a nice peek into Dying Fetus’ humble beginnings ― before they became the mainstream pissing death metal behemoths they are today.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
March 14th, 2011


  1. Commented by: jerry

    “Skull Fucked” is one of the best tracks on Purification-did you mean that the live version hadn’t appeared on a record yet?

  2. Commented by: brutalicon

    I have the original version of this and all their other releases. This one is kind of a turd compared to the stuff released in the next few years after. It was fun to hear the really early stuff for kicks, but it grates on me these days.

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