Embalmer
Embalmed Alive

Ohio’s Embalmer are one of the longest running active death metal bands out there today.  Like all death metal bands that have been around for 20+ years there have been line-up changes along the way.  I’ve been an Embalmer fan since 1993 and have not looked back.  Throughout the years they have put out 2 full length albums, demos, eps and now Embalmed Alive.  This is not a traditional live album per se, but rather the band wanted to give the fans a good taste of what an Embalmer live show is.  So: Paul (vocals), Roy (drums), Joe (bass), Dylan and Don (guitar) set out to do a plug and play.  This album was recorded in a studio, but a live setting, of basically let’s just go in and play together as a band and record this SOB.  So even if you have never seen the band play live, do not just think, well I got this cd now and there is no need for it.  If you do I’ll hand you a Godzilla sized magillicutty-sloberknocker to the throat.

Embalmer took all their choice cuts throughout their 25+ year existence, and songs they love playing live and I guess you can say are also fan favorites.  They ran through the songs as if they were playing live or rehearsing for a live gig and what you get is an unbridled and furious release.  Also throughout their existence, some of these songs, have changed slightly when played live therefore Embalmer simulates this as if you were witnessing them playing the songs live.  15 songs in 43 minutes to take your head and rip it off and lob it over the fence at your neighbor’s house like a goddamned grenade.  “Bone Box” sounds mighty brutal and Paul’s 20 second opening growl rivals that of former Embalmer throat, Rick Fleming and I just love Paul’s higher throatier growls and then the deeper growl-a thing of beauty and to this day “Bone Box” continues to be my favorite Embalmer song.  And Roy’s blasting is the best he has done throughout his career and the man is in his 50’s, that old dirty bastid.

The title track from their sophomore album, Emanations from the Crypt, is so gut-wrenchingly heavy on this.  I mean originally I thought it was a heavy track, but hearing them re-do it here and making it sound a little beefier, that opening part which repeats itself later on has Autopsy ridden with filth like heaviness soaked all over it, along with some extra eyeballs and intestines.  One of the best written death metal riffs in a long ‘effin time.  Other classics and newer tunes redone all benefit greatly with this simulated live sound.  “The Necro Filing Cabinet”, “Dead Female Stalker”, “The Casket Calls”, “There was Blood Everywhere” will decapitate you from 5 miles away and wipe that pathetic thing, you call a head, right off your now useless shoulders.

The album cover is awesome and reminds me a bit of Mortician’s Reanimated Dead Flesh.  I love the yellow Embalmer logo.  Insert is simple.  Pics and liner notes.  If you are an Embalmer fan this is a must have.  If you really have never heard the band this is the perfect release to start off with since all the songs span the length of the band’s career.  And while Embalmer are busy recording their 3rd full-length now, this is something you want in your collection.  Phenomenal compilation, Embalmed Alive, needs to be in your collection now!

 

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
July 11th, 2019

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