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This 2005 second full length album from the Swedish Nominon was my first attempt to listen to their music and if I remember correctly I was recommended to get this album and support this band by some other musicians and zine editors, which I was in contact with at that time. Since I’m an easy to deal with lad and I like when people recommend me good stuff I bought the LP version of “Recremation”. And well, I can honestly say that those people, who were saying all those good things about Nominon were right. This band turned out to be yet another cool Swedish death metal squadron. I guess Nominon was a leading death metal force in the underground scene of Sweden along with Kaamos and Repugnant at that time. Having in the discography the first album, “Diabolical Bloodshed”, released already back in 1999 and then the awesome MLP “The True Face of Death” in 2004, “Recremation” was finally unleashed in 2005, with the LP version under the sign of Blood Harvest.
“Recremation” hits right in the face already with the first riff, which opens “Submit to Evil”. Nominon do not toy with us with useless intros, but does everything they were destined for from the very first second. And “Submit to Evil” is just as an excellent song; so old school, so rough and relentless that you’ll get a neckache very quickly. I love it. Obviously such bands as Dismember, Merciless and later era Grave (even the vocalist sounds like Ola Lindgren) come to my mind immediately, when I listen to Nominon. And that’s a compliment, as quality wise “Recremation” really do not stand far behind the classic albums of those bands, which I mentioned now. That is especially noticeable, when I listen to the second song, “Hordes of Flies”, as it is opened by the catchiest riff from the album; I mean the opening part of this song is just a classic Swedish death metal and you just cannot not to love it. It is so catchy that you’ll repeat the song all the day, just for this riff. I may not like how the band fastens up the pace after some time, the song definitely looses a bit of its great feeling from the beginning, but luckily later on Nominon repeats the main theme again and adds even more cool stuff, so in the end “Hordes of Flies” is probably the most memorable tune from the whole album.
If, after listening to the two tracks, which open “Recremation” you didn’t get a neckache then it means that the rest of the album also won’t speak to you. Really the whole “Recremation” is just a constant pure Swedish death metal worship; no useless, modern additions, no over the top technical bits or whatever… It is as much infected by the classic sound as it is possible. Even the production of “Recremation” is very old school; very raw, but somehow also very lively, giving me a feeling like I was listening to the band playing a rehearsal. “The End Written in Blood” (with a killer doomy part in the middle), “Under the Five-Pointed Star” are some other good tracks… and songs like “Into Black”, “Condemned to Die” and “Sickening” do surprise me with how fast the pace is there; really Per Karlsson is blasting like crazy in those tracks. But above all I must admit that when I compare “Recremation” to the previous release, “The True Face of Death”, where only one song really crushed me to death, I can see a huge progress in every aspect. The sound of this album is awesome, and then the song writing is just spotless, blending the classic Swedish death metal with some thrash hints and those blasts… Wow, I have nothing to add that just recommend it to you. Get the LP, if you find it anywhere, and you’ll get also a Whiplash cover as a bonus, plus the whole artwork looks really cool on the LP. So, what are you waiting for? If you’re into this sort of music, then “Recremation” is a must to have!
Standout tracks: “Sumbit to Evil”, “Lords of Flies”, “Into Black”
This is an album you cannot listen to after listening to their debut (when I say 'you' I'm referring to myself), "Diabolical Bloodshed". Why? Well, what we have here is a completely different beast than the aforementioned debut. One of the more noticeable changes would be the production. It has much more grit than what was presented on the debut, giving the guitars a more sludgy edge as apposed to the (slightly) cleaner tone on "Diabolical Bloodshed".
The other would be a lessened presence of the bass. Sure, you can hear it clunking along behind the guitars, but it does rarely step up to make its presence truly known (aside from its performance in the Nihilist-infused "Sickening" and "Into Black"), which was really an aspect of "Diabolical Bloodshed" I truly loved. Next, the vocalist. He's not too important when it comes to the overall sound, but that doesn't make up for the fact that he is still there. His contributions consist of hollow growls and screams with the occasional meaty performance usually in the form of overdubbing.
Last and least, the drummer. The poor guy is so far back into the production it's difficult to make out what he is doing exactly. His entire kit is audible, but he's just made to be so quite. The production does the same thing it had done to the drums on Vital Remains' "Forever Underground" by practically muting the snare whenever a blast beat is performed.
Gripes aside, this turned out to be a worthy effort. There are plenty of riffs to accommodate in all their ancient deathly glory. There are plenty of songs here that pay homage to the old masters. "The End Written In Blood" is one with it slowing down to an Autopsy-ish doom-laden part before speeding up again. The aforementioned "Sickening" has a bass solo in the middle. "Under the Five Pointed Star" reminds me of Dismember's "In Death's Sleep" in the beginning.
Really, there's not too much to hate here. Despite the rather rash change in style, they still deliver a solid effort despite its obvious flaws. Any fans of the debut or old school death metal in general will enjoy this extensively. However, their best is still yet to come. This is merely a tribute to the old masters.
For reasons not worth going into, this band which has existed for 14 years, has only managed to put out two full-length albums - with a 6 year gap between them. Was it worth the wait?
Well, that depends. Do you like traditional Swedish death metal? I mean bands like Dismember, Grave, Carnage, and (early) Entombed? Would you like to hear some modern bands continue on this grand tradition, but feel that the more well-known examples of the style (e.g. Bloodbath) are too slick, too cheesy, and just don't get it right?
If that's how you think, I agree with you, and that's why I'm glad this almost unknown act is soldiering on, and finally got their shit enough together to release "Recremation." Their previous album was a somewhat blackened death metal affair, and a solid album in its own right, but with this release Nominon finally hit their stride. The sound is prime old school Swedeath, with just enough of a concession made to modern production standards. Musically all the staple elements are here: pounding double bass, mid tempos (and no blasting), and that glorious faux-Sunlight buzz that makes the guitars sound like bass with distortion and reverb. Nominon's new vocalist (a different guy sang the raspier vocals on "Diabolical Bloodshed") is a classic Swedish death guy, sounding basically like a hybrid between Entombed's LG Petrov and Grave's Jörgen Sandström. He's not as powerful as either, but he definitely gets the job done.
Highlights here include "Buried By Me," which has some kickass doomy passages that could have been lifted from "Left Hand Path" and a heavy-as-shit galloping section right out of Grave's "You'll Never See." Another strong track is the brutal, bludgeoning two minutes of "Sickening" - true throwback Swedish death/thrash. The opening two songs are two of the album's best as well. And special mention to "The End Written In Blood," a very epic song with absolutely sick processed vocals in the middle. End written in blood? Sounds like the guy is singing with a mouthful of blood to me.
Nominon has churned out a rarity here - a true homage to the founders of Swedish death, without sounding like a pastiche (Bloodbath) or too well-produced (Bloodbath) or just not that fuckin good (Bloodbath). Go to their site and order this shit, and if you have the money, get their previous album too. They've got a new one coming out this year, and I can't wait for it.