Necrophobic
Satanic Blasphemies

As when I heard the re-issue of Marduk’s Dark Endless last year, I had no idea that the current iteration of one of Sweden’s more respected second tier black/death metal acts, Necrophobic was so different from their more recognized, current sound.

Like Marduk, Necrophobic’s first sound was one rooted in early Swedish death metal, namely Nihilist, Carnage, Gorement, Evocation and such, and this collection captures the bands pre The Nocturnal Silence sound with the band 3 demo’s (1989s 1 track rehearsal demo, 1990s Slow Asphyxiation demo, 1991s Unholy Prophecies demo) as well as the band’s 1993 debut EP, The Call.

Those only familiar with the bands respected and more familiar output from The Nocturnal Silence on (Darkside, The Third Antichrist, Bloodhymns, Hrimthursum and this years Death to All) will hardly recognize the band, as even with some remastering, the lo-fi Sunlight Studios sound on a majority of the material is pure, primal, early 90s mid range buzz and rumble with strains of doomy melody and deep cavernous vocals as opposed to the razor sharp slice and dice of the bands slightly more black metal influenced sound that the band is more recognized for. If you’ve heard the Nihilist/Entombed demos, that’s pretty much a pin point comparison as from the rough single track demo, “Realm of Terror” through the more polished but still gravelly lurch and squeal of the three tracks that comprise the excellent The Call EP (“Shadows of the Moon”, “The Ancients Gate”, “Father of Creation”) the material is pure Stockholm worship (not surprising since the band is from Stockholm).

Even the tracks that were redone for 1993s relatively classic debut album, The Nocturnal Silence, sound far more evil and death metal based than there more polished final versions that fans will be more familiar with. And while fans of the bands more recognized sound may be taken aback or even disappointed, for Stockholm worshippers like me, this collection is a must have as due to the fine remaster/touch up effort, it plays seamlessly like a full album of unearthed classic death metal and an undiscovered gem that fits in perfectly with the current interest and resurgence of the genre.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
October 16th, 2009

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