Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2021
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Good for what it is, but redundant... - 60%

robotiq, June 22nd, 2020

The first proper Convulse demo is an upgrade on their rehearsal demo in every possible way. The two songs from that tape are on here too, along with two new ones. The band sounds heavier, gloomier and tighter. There are no gargantuan leaps in the band's sound, but there are slight improvements that add up to something significant. The main change is that this demo has considerably more crunch in the production department. This should be expected because it would have been done as a proper recording session, rather than as a mere practice tape.

So yeah, this is rickety, rusty, honest old death metal. It is slightly above average. The vocals are gruffer than they were on the rehearsal demo. The band now sounds a bit like early Grave, but with some stunted, off-tune Slayer-esque solos. Convulse were never the most original Finnish band. They never had the methodical, confident sound of Demigod. They weren't as evil as Abhorrence. They weren’t as talented as Sentenced or Disgrace. What Convulse provided was unfettered, gutter-level violence. They sounded darker and more unhinged than most. Some of their musical explorations seem strange to the modern ear; there is a solo in the title track which sounds so unpleasant that I wonder whether it was intentional. I quite like it. I’m inclined to think that it was a result of cheap instruments, bad tuning and crappy recording equipment. Who knows?

The new song "Putrid Intercourse" is the best of the four songs here. I particularly like the latter half of it which moves from one great riff to the next. The final song on the demo is another version of "Powerstruggle of Belief". This version is much better than the one on the rehearsal, the intro sounds more practiced and the guitar has been tuned properly this time around. Being honest, I still think this song sounds like second-tier Bay Area thrash. I also don’t like how it ends without any thought or ceremony. As for the other two songs, they're good if nothing special in their incarnations here. There seems little point in discussing them in detail because all four songs appear on the debut album where they sound fresher, heavier and better.

This demo is not exactly a hidden gem. Convulse were better and nastier than your average death metal band but they were never going to move mountains with a demo like this. For some reason, the full-length album “World Without God” that appeared a year later was a massive improvement without sounding that different. As such, there is little chance of this demo ever gaining cult status. This is worth a casual listen because it is short, crushing and enjoyable, but it lacks the depth and darkness needed to sustain interest. My final thought on this demo relates to the brilliant cover art, which deserves a wider audience.