The Plague
Within Death

The tragic death of Entombed/Entombed AD/Firespawn/Comecon vocalist LG Petrov (RIP), has me digging into any recent, HM2, Sunlight Sounding death metal I can find in the teethofthedivine promo inbox. And 3, in particular, have caught my ear early in 2021; Endseeker’s Mount Carcass, the LP reissue of Iron Flesh‘s second album, Summoning the Putrid (I must have missed its CD release in 2020) and the debut, Within Death from Aussie newcomers The Plague (fittingly on Bitter Loss Records).

It’s about now I say something like ‘some HM2 pedals have made their way to Australia’, but Earth Rot already grabbed the first batch, but The Plague certainly turned everything to 11 on their debut effort and are making no pretenses of their chosen influence ( if Bitter Loss Records didn’t give it away). This is pure early Entombed worship, mixing the dark, raw aggression of Left Hand Path, and the thunderous clout of Clandestine, into one massive, impressive homage.

From the throaty shout of Mike Ryan and his best Petrov impression, to the huge Chris Blacanto mix and master that rivals the like of genre kings Demonical, Lik and Entrails, Within Death is 33 minutes of top notch HM2 worship done absolutely perfectly. There is very little focus on more Dismember like melodies (though obviously still an influence) but rather a pretty relentless, pummeling approach. In fact, its not until, the fifth song, “Hand of Greed”, that the band slow down for a whole song and generates a massive “Blessed Be” like ¬†lumber, as the prior 4 tracks pretty well blaze by in a vortex of buzzsaw riffs, double bass stomps and gallops, with the short stab of “Torment The Living” and “Spawn of Monstrosity” being particularly nasty.

After “Hand of Greed”, the back end of the album has a little more groove, with the huge closing rumble of “Drones”, very Clandestine midsection of “Slave to Addiction”, crawling heft to start standout “Dismal Solitude”.¬† The title track and “Festering Sickness” round out the album with a little more of a Dismember ish canter and slice, but still has some nasty slower parts to rattle your teeth.

Within Death . Mount Carcass, and Iron Flesh’s Summoning the Putrid are virtually neck a neck when it comes to which one I like more. The Plague has a meatier production and Iron Flesh have a little more melody and variety. But both deliver killer homages to a classic sound and both should be picked up by any fans of Entombed, Dismember, Grave etc.

 

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 27th, 2021

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