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A crash course in (genuine) brutality! - 85%

Jimmy Calhoun, March 13th, 2014

I've been listening to death metal for basically half of my 29 years - albeit with a few years off in college - and you would think that by now I'd be pretty well desensitized to its, er, rather sensationalistic subject matter. But when a band leads off their album with a track called "Beaten, Raped, Fuckin' Left to Die" - and the music backing up these often-quite-intelligible lyrics seems to reinforce a certain seriousness of intent - even I have to step back and pause for a moment. Nothing to do with any political abstractions, mind you, but simply a question of who these guys are and what they're really about. I'm sure as hell not naive enough to think they're actually serial murderers/rapists, but the apparent conviction with which they express... whatever it is - hatred, rage, a pitch-black sense of humor perhaps - is honestly frightening in a way that the seasoned death metal fan doesn't encounter too often.

The above paragraph, I suppose, can be considered a roundabout way of saying that this album, in just about the sickest, most "deranged" possible fashion, kicks your fucking ass across the room and right through the front window. I'll admit to not being too well versed in this band's rather extensive catalog (I only have 'Plainfield' and 'High on Blood' at the moment) but what I have heard must rank as some of the better brutal death out there. Far from the lame Cannibal Corpse knockoff they're sometimes dismissed as, these Swedes are more vicious and terrifying than any post-'Tomb of the Mutilated' CC material could ever dream of being. Compared to this stuff, "Fucked With A Knife" is just a tasteless, not-even-that-disturbing joke. And it's not even about the lyrics - everybody in this genre tries to out-sicken each other anyway - but the chunky buzzsaw riffs, the bone-snapping drums, and the deep, deep growls that sound like Barnes and Fisher reincarnated in one body. Picking out highlights is a somewhat useless exercise - the songs don't vary much, and they all fucking rip. But the aforementioned opener has to be one of the most genuinely unsettling moments in 21st-century death metal, its frantic hyperspeed guitar chords and equally out-of-control drumming, and the fairly audible vocals where you can pretty much hear exactly what Mr. Calle Faldt is saying, combining to create something that actually sounds downright threatening. Much the same goes for songs like "Mutilate and Dump You" and "Suffering, the Sweet Suffering" - growling along with the latter's refrain is one of my personal favorite moments.

Basically, if you like brutal death metal then you can't go wrong with this album, there's plenty here to satisfy fans of both the American (post-CC) and the European (think Disavowed or Pyaemia) styles. More so than most BDM records, this one is actually *scary*, in both concept and execution.

The Art of Slaying – Part I - 75%

androdion, December 25th, 2010

I’ll admit that I hadn’t heard Deranged in a while, although I do own this cd for quite some time now. The idea of having my brain smashed by a hammer and my body pierced by a meat hook isn’t quite my definition of everyday enjoyment, but there comes a time in everyone’s lives when a little bit of gore and guts is on demand. Well a lot really if we’re talking about letting these Swedes get inside the room!

From the get go we’re treated with two of the most brutal tracks on the album, “Beaten, Raped, Fucking Left To Die” and “Stab And Hack”, which by their beautifully constructed names can already tell you what grounds we walk. Unrelenting and brutal non-stop pounding drums, accompanied by some really fast riffs, with some cookie monster vocals on top. There’s nothing overly technical about Deranged’s sound, but the fact is they’re fun! They play fast, faster and bordering on hyperdrive, but they always leave some space for a bit of groovey rhythms that let you catch your breath, if only for a few seconds. The breakdowns in the middle part of “We Lure And Abduct” are a good example of that, sometimes they’ll just stop the mayhem for ten seconds, introduce a bit of breathing space so they can burst out violently once again. Even though their style is pretty simplistic, some riffs are very cool, and believe it or not the bass has some shining moments as in “God Is Dead”, which is the most complex song in the album. It has some very nice mid-paced sections where they just leave more space for composition style instead of unrelenting brutality. It’s easily one of the highlights on the album.

Speaking of the string session of the band, man it has one hell of a tone, ultra-distorted borderline on the typical buzzsaw but with a much thicker tone and never being quite the full on Swedish sound we know. The production is as brutal as the guitar tone, allowing you to hear everything, although you can’t hear the bass all the time, but what else is new right? But when you can hear the bass it sounds very good, especially in the slower parts, which aren’t that much really.

“Deathgasm” is together with “God Is Dead” the longest track on the album, but whereas the second one is a more mid-paced exercise filled with brilliant parts, the first one just drags on being really fast until the last minute and a half, where it really drags even more, but now slowly. By this point you’ve already been caused severe head trauma but believe me, there still are four more tracks! The beginning part and the middle riff of “Suffering, The Sweet Suffering” is worth notice as it brings again some of the brutality of the first two tracks with some nice guitar leads. The last two songs are two more exercises in the same formula, with nothing exceptional, just two more good Deranged style beatings. And although by this point you’ve been clearly beaten to a pulp you can’t stop but scream forth the last song's chorus “As I fuck the deviant dead”, over and over again.

This album won’t revolutionize anything, it’s nothing new by this point, but it doesn’t try to be. It serves its purpose of being a savagely played and constructed album, where the only thing you must do is bang your head for its duration. So kick back, grab your weapon of choice, and enjoy the gore!

Good, but nothing new - 75%

KlausBarbie, January 12th, 2005

This is a good offering of death metal. The band is definetly in the same category as Vomitory and Cannibal Corpse (extreme death metal?). But for Deranged, that is the problem. There is nothing new and exciting about this band. What they produce is great if you're a fan of blast beats and growling lyrics, but they offer nothing new than any other band in the genre. I was listening to the album earlier, and I didn't realise that a few tracks had passed because it all sounds the same. Now, that's not to say that the music is bad, it's just a bit repetitive.

As a trio unit, Deranged is incredibly talented. They play good extreme death metal, and it is excellent to headbang to. However, I will stick with my original complaint and say that they are a bit repetitive.

Deranged Indeed! - 95%

chasm, November 21st, 2004

Deranged, one of the few swedish death metal bands that came out during the early nineties that have always stucked to their own style. Together with Vomitory and Dismember, Deranged has from their early beginning delivered the most bloodsoaked and violent death metal ever been heard within swedish boundries! I don't know what ppl say, but I claim that 'Plainfield Cemetery' is their best work to date. This unrelenting sledgehammer of heavy riffs with filth and melodic touches don't sell out. This shit is still brutal as hell.
There's alot of twisted riffs and groove. Just listening to " Mutilate And Dump You" and "We Lure And Abduct". The vocals are sick, not in the deep gurgly-type, rather the in-your-fucking-face style. The bass is a great weight, atleast for the brutal sound of theirs. The drums can be quite repetive but without any thought to slow down. For fans of Gorgasm, Vomitory or Morbid Angel perhaps this should be owned. Over and out