Grave
Out of Respect for the Dead

Let’s be brutally honest shall we? Sure Grave’s first three albums are certified classics, and while there’s some division over Hating Life, I’m willing to say that other the overall excitement of the band’s reunion in 2002, the post Jorgen, post “Back From the Grave” glow might have worn off . And other than 2012s Endless Procession of Souls, I don’t think any of the bands post 2002 release really hold up that well, and despite being the last one standing of the original Stockholm big three, they seem to be a bit worn thin.

So here we are again, album number 7 after the return from the grave, and it’s exactly what you’d expect from Ola and co. The sound has moved on from the mid range buzz of lore to a muddier, groove based rumble and lope that the band has locked in on for 7 albums now. It’s still unmistakably Grave, persistently unabashedly Grave, and despite attempts at more ‘experimental’ throes (ten minute doom closer “Grotesque Glory”), as with the last few albums I defy you to recall a single song once the gravelly,  crude rumbles have ceased.

Now I don’t expect nor have I ever expected Ola to revisit Into the Grave or You’ll Never See since the band reformed, but like Asphyx, the initial luster of the band’s return seems to have worn off and the classics seem that much more special now. Sure there’s are some steady, solid beefy numbers on Out of Respect for the Dead such as “Plain Pine Box”, “Deified” or the title track,  and even some more uptempo numbers like “Redeemed Through Hate” and “Trail of Ungodly Trades” (which does a have pretty nifty ending groove), but right now I’m purchasing Grave albums as a completionist, not a fan of the music as the likes of Vastum, Undergang, Soulskinner, Anarchos or the plethora of new Swedish death metal acts has me far more entertained.

Still, the legacy is at least intact and has not been completely sullied (I’m looking at you Entombed and Morbid Angel), but it might be time Ola moved on and put Grave to rest as you can only release so many fair to middling albums before the legacy does becomes tainted.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
November 30th, 2015

Comments

  1. Commented by: Jay

    I’m a big Grave follower. Those early albums are some of my favorites in all of death metal and I’ve enjoyed the current run even if I’m always hoping for more classic moments and they are kind of sparse and scattered.

    I LOVE “Grotesque Glory” on this one. Thought that was a chance taken that worked out in their favor. There’s moments all throughout this record but it’s definitely not turning me upside down and I think it’s a bit lesser than the last couple. It’ll be getting more listens soon though and I’ll see how I feel at that point.


  2. Commented by: Jay

    Also you’re spot on about “Endless Procession of Souls” being the best of the return albums. Dig that one a lot!


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