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Ensepulcher > No Sanctity in Death > Reviews > Agalsed
Ensepulcher - No Sanctity in Death

Swedish Death metal from Spain - with a few twists - 85%

Agalsed, December 31st, 2017
Written based on this version: 2017, Digital, Transylvanian Tapes

A blink-and-you’ll-miss-it slab of nasty Swedish death metal that will leave you wanting more. Hailing from California, these fellas sound more like they crawled out of a pit somewhere in Stockholm circa the early nineties. Everything you’d expect from a swedeath revival band is here in spades: HM-2 Worship guitar tone, nasty, grinding, grooving riffs, an aggressive bass tone, and some nice punk influence. Rather than going with a nuanced approach, the drums pretty much just pummel everything in their wake, combining blast-beats, thrash drumming, and d-beats complemented by laser-fast fills summing to a frenetic and ferocious performance. Occasionally there is some nice cymbal work, but that’s not the focal point of the drumming here.

These guys are very much in the vein of Entombed et al. But Ensepulcher differentiate themselves—as much differentiation as can be had in seven minutes—in a few aspects of their music. For one, rather than aping the style of L.G. Petrov, Matti Karki, or Nicke Anderson like a lot of modern takes on swedeath—think Tormented or Graveyard—“Adam” chooses to go with a more Incantation-esque roar. It’s the kind of milk-curdling bellow you’d more expect to hear on a caverndeath release than something influenced so heavily by Scandinavia. And though it’s relatively unusual, it totally works here with the Swedish sound.

Another point of departure are the song lengths. There are four songs across the span of seven minutes, and if you can do the math, you know that means these songs are short. Ensepulcher writes absolutely blistering 90-second-or-so flashes that are pretty much over before you know they’ve started. Indeed, even after several listens, I find myself not realizing they’ve moved from one track to the next until the whole thing is over. That’s really the only knock I can give for this demo is that it’s a little difficult to get in a groove given its brief length and non-existent transitions between songs. But that’s also a strength in that you can put it on repeat and let it melt your ears over and over and over again. This album is not ground breaking—but it is earth shattering.

Originally written for themetalobserver.com