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These guys must have felt a real hunger for old school death metal, as Demonical unleashed their second plague only two years after they spawned the devastation called "Servants of the Unlight". Their new shredder has been titled "Hellsworn" and man... it is one hellishly great album. Although I must say it is slightly different than its predecessor. If you remember the debut LP and such ultimately fast and destructive songs as "Feeding the Armageddon" (which even had black metal riffing, in my opinion), then well, none of that is present on "Hellsworn". This album is definitely slower, the playing and tempos are more classic death metal mid paced riffing, the album is very traditional old school, and Demonical didn't use those ultimate fast cuts. But don't get me wrong, the absence of that didn't make the music weak, this still is straight forward, aggressive death metal album!
With this album I can see more and more why did they decide to end Centinex and begin something new... Opened with amazing "Baptized In Fire", "Hellsworn" takes influences from the original Swedish death metal pioneers, such as Grave, Dismember and don't take it as a shame, trying to play this style as diverse and well as it can only be possible, so your head won't stop banging and speakers will explode from the loud music. And pretty diverse this album is, at the same time it's damn catchy in many chorus parts and memorable as it's straight forward, brutal and groovy. "Infernal Void" is one of those in your face and no remorse songs, one of the fastest on the album, which you'll love straight away, while "Bloodridden" is showing some doomy, slow riffs in the opening part, evolving into more Grave-esque track later on. "Götter Des Nordens" with surprising German lyrics, is the grooviest and simplest song you may imagine to hear on the album, but man, it did work, as it's also one of my favorites. It shows that you don't need 10 thousands riffs to get great death metal song. Simplicity is often better and the atmosphere must be dark and hellish. "Death Metal Darkness" is another great example for that. No guitar wanking, no bullshit... just pure onslaught, aggression and again catchy chorus, making it a personal death metal anthem with the (cheesy maybe, but cool!) lyrics: "Death metal darkness - devastation will forever be. Death metal darkness - we are the masters of immortality!". And finally "Bow To The Monolith", total Dismember worship (just listen to those short melodies), but it sounds so fuckin great. Same with the instrumental title track - when I listen to the guitar lead at the beginning, I just have "Indecent & Obscene" in my mind!
Demonical got excellent production again, using Necromorbus Studio this time and man... the sound is raw and dirty, but traditional for the Swedish death metal, reminding me albums like "Indecent & Obscene" right away. Oh, that guitar sound! A Nobel prize for the Entombed / Nihilist guys for discovering it! Also Demonical presents new vocalist Sverker Widgren. Welcome! Ludvig Engellau had great voice also, but luckily Sverker's doing what he's supposed to do in death metal band - using his voice for great guttural vocals, not for cock sucking. But the entire band's performance is top notch, I have absolutely nothing to complain about!
All in all, Demonical delivered another great album. I'm not sure if it's better than the debut, maybe not, as "Servants of the Unlight" was just pure hell, unleashed in the middle of the calmest day ever, but "Hellsworn" isn't far behind it. I love it and probably together with such bands as Bloodbath and Facebreaker, I find Demonical as the best newer band around... And Interment of corpse he, he! Anyway, totally recommended LP! Favorite tracks? So many, but I can mention "Baptized In Fire", "Götter Des Nordens" and "Bow To The Monolith".