Exhumed
Death Revenge
(Relapse Records)

Death Revenge is a death-grind retelling of the real life grisly murders in Edinburgh, Scotland during the late 1820s. In graphic detail, Exhumed set the stage for the vile grave-robbery and selling of cadavers that took place. It is this kickass concept, combining with blistering instrumentation, that makes for an excellent release from the band.

It would have been easier had Exhumed just decided to go about the cookie cutter route of death metal, and just toss in a bunch of fast and generic heavy tracks. There are some similarities that string through the work, such as the grind elements of the drumming. Yet, there is a difference between common similarities, and monotonous nature, and Exhumed are surely not the latter. The overall savage and violent drive that makes for Death Revenge keeps each song consistently energized, rarely slowing down in momentum. Things start off with a somber air in “Death Revenge Overture”, with chilling classical music building like a gothic horror film. Upon creeping into “Defenders of the Grave”, the band rips away at the silence with pummeling drum beats and a grimy guitar rhythm. The bass pumps away underneath as the track continues to trudge forward with a vibrant darkness. Eventually the vocals kick in, unleashing gurgles that would please the undead.

“Dead End” begins with a balance that shifts from gritty distortion with hectic blast beats, to electric streaks that burst through the rest of the instrumentation. The intro to “Night Work” plays around with a style that almost comes off like a Slayer song, leading the sound into an underlining dark rhythm that pops at times with bright red streaks of guitar tones. There are lots of touches throughout Death Revenge that pack a blend of classic death and death thrash, such as that in “Unspeakable”. Right away the track starts with a rapid drum beat, pummeling bass, and delicious guitar rhythm that will immediately spikes one’s adrenaline. The progression suddenly drops into the band’s core death-grind sound, creating a whirlwind of hysteric devastation. The terrifying atmosphere brings with it that death metal air, while the brutal speeds pay honor to that of death thrash.

“The Anatomy Act of 1832” is a really interesting track, and one of the record’s catchiest titles. As a pure instrumental, the classical elements weave in shades of mystery and sinister scheming, the progression later on introducing evil and threatening auras through the more metal qualities. At one point the material is all spooky and sending chills down one’s spine, and then a sudden transition comes that will have folks compulsively head banging until their skulls fall off. “A Funeral Party” is a straight forward grind fest, showing off rapid guitar playing and chaotic drum work. The guttural vocals add a layer of slimy texture to the music that washes over with horrid appeal. From speedy sections to catchy rhythms, the material is an utter rush of insanity.

Death Revenge is an absolute blast of a record. Six studio albums into their career, and Exhumed continue to show their commitment and talent for creating fun and pulse racing death metal. With an intriguing concept and incredibly fast and technical instrumentation that creates emotion, Exhumed present a terrific work that will get folks moshing through graveyards and partying with the dead.

Purchase the album here.

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