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''Death from the Forest'' is the worst thing I've ever heard. This is the worst thing I've ever heard, and I genuinely mean that. Words can't properly describe how bad this mistake of an album is.
The very first thing you notice is how bad the production is. And seeing that albums like ''Nattens Madrigal'' and ''Wrath of the Tyrant'' are among my favourites releases, it's quite impressive that even I can't get past how bad the sound is. You can barely hear anything, it's completely incomprehensible for the most part. I get that demos are something you make without a budget, but holy hell, this is beyond forgiving.
The guitars, that are really out of tune, play some really boring generic riffs. I would liken them to something, however never have I heard such bad riffs. It truly sounds like something you'd play when you just started playing guitar. There's not much more to say about them really, as they're just so forgettable.
Now, to the absolute worst part of the demo: The vocals. They are horrible. His growls sound like someone with a cold coughing, and even in the comfort of solitude in my own home do I get embarrassed just by listening to them. However it's not his growls that makes this release so utterly atrocious ; it's his singing that makes it so bad. The vocalist doesn't hit a single note, and sounds so sour. When singing he sounds like a drowning cat, and I don't know whether to laugh or cry whenever he sings.
It's hard to really describe the overall sound, themes and atmosphere, not only because of the production making it almost impossible to hear anything, but also because it's so forgettable. I've listened to it over and over again, but it's just nothing to say, because there's nothing ever remotely interesting happening. The only instance I would recommend this mistake to anyone, is to give them a good laugh.
Death From The Forest - it sounds like a name associated with black metal, I'd go as far as calling it a pretty cool title. The band may have even gone for the absurd approach, as their name suggests, and recorded it in a forest, though it sounds more like a basement. You're probably better off just reading the album's title, the music really isn't worth listening to, even if you're into old lo-fi black metal demos.
There is a decent riff or two on here, such as the intro to "Last Breath" where the guitar builds a bit of atmosphere. For a black metal demo released in 1993, it is quite surprising the the drums are fairly audible, I can hear the kick, snare and cymbals, and the rough tone of them doesn't detract from the recording at all. That's all the good I have to say about the album.
The guitar tone sounds like a heavily clipped synthesizer, maybe a hammond organ played through a ripped speaker into a pinhole microphone. Despite excessive clipping on the guitars, they aren't high in the mix. I suppose the mix is alright, I can hear everything most of the time, but nearly every tone on the album is unpleasant. The vocals are a mix of mediocre, droning singing that sounds like it is heard through a paper bag, and growls/snarls/shouts that sound like I usually hear from joke bands that sound as much like a bird squawking as a screaming human. This is an entirely amateur effort with none of the charm that the individual elements brought to the more notable bands of the style and time.
Absurd, a band known more for the murder of a classmate, have actually released material that has impressed me. However, this demo (if you can call it that) is just utterly terrible.
Keep in mind that I usually don't care much about production quality. Bands in The Black Legions can pull it off very well and make the music sound decent. However, Absurd can't. The attempt here at "tr00 kvlt n3kr0 raw" production was indeed raw, but fails in all other areas. The band started to form their own sound, a mixture of punk and black metal, on this demo. Don't waste your time listening to this shit, especially with the terrible song titles.
Absurd have, as I said, released some excellent material. For a first-time listener, try the Thuringian Pagan Madness tape. It's a shame that none of the original members of Absurd are in the band today.