Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2021
Encyclopaedia Metallum

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

Privacy Policy

Mordbrand Ignites the Underground - 100%

Akerthorpe, August 8th, 2014

Sweden’s Mordbrand return with an album that is thick with unadulterated brutality such so that it will certainly rape your ears of all remaining auditory innocence. “Imago” is the first full-length from this band, but they are certainly no strangers to the world of underground metal. The 9 tunes on this CD, without a doubt, showcase the band’s talents in a light that reveals little doubt of the band’s untapped potential. This album will definitely appeal to every fan of the typical Swedish death metal sound, but there is nothing at all typical about this release. Meaning “arson” in Swedish, Mordbrand are here to set fire to the world of underground death metal and burn down any obstacles that might be in their way.

One thing that strikes me about this CD is the thickness and heaviness of the sound. You usually do not find such thickness in bands like this. This is a “vibe” that is reserved more for bands that play such forms of music as stoner rock and doom metal. However, that feel and vibe is unmistakable here. You can just feel it oozing with such an infectious attitude all the way from the riffs down to the vocals. No doubt the production had something to do with it, but you can tell by the sound of the instruments themselves. It’s a vibe that goes so much deeper than just the applied production values, which I might add are top notch. The riffs have that undeniable “bite” to them but seem to be tuned a tad bit lower as compared to other Swedish bands playing similar music such as older Necrophobic, Dismember, older Entombed, and Unleashed. To go along with the fore-mentioned bite of the riffs is a feeling of murkiness or muddiness that is applied well and sets the band apart from others playing the same type of music. Drawn-out when needed and agonistic with the foreboding feeling of death and doom, the riffs on this album are nothing less than the blueprint for the next generation of Swedish death metal bands. Yes, the influences are there and right in your face, but the band proceeds to shove these riffs right down your throat with a special touch that will no doubt make them influential for years to come.

The solos are classically unrelenting and filled with just as much infectious dread ad the riffs themselves. They really show the talent and style that has become a staple of Swedish death metal over the years. The biggest influence as far as the solos are concerned is Dismember but there are also some elements of a Grave vibe happening as well. Presented and displayed in a classical way, the will definitely take you back to the old school a bit, but with a fresh twist they are ready to take you into the future of this undeniable art and show you the path on which they are headed. I can tell you from the first listen of this CD that that path is definitely a good one. Very well grounded in technical ability, yet more than able and willing to forgo the technical route for a more simplistic yet mind-blowing, competition-destructing delivery. The guitars aren’t the only aspect of the music where the band adds their own little touch.

The drum work on this CD is nothing less than absolute talent. This is one of the few albums where the material displayed purely showcases the drummer’s talent without the use of triggering. If I am wrong and there is triggering going on here, I sure as hell can’t notice it. When most bands are now applying the use of triggers in their music, Mordbrand seems to go in the completely opposite direction, showing and proving that the double bass doesn’t need to be a million beats a minute. Whereas the guitars employ a more modern yet classical approach, the drums employ that same classical approach in theory and delivery. When these 2 elements are placed together along with a deep rattling bass and vocals that can stand the test of time against any Swedish death metal vocalist to have ever done this, Mordbrand have blended the old school and the new school almost seamlessly. I just don’t see how this album could disappoint anyone. It’s not all that complex but it is just brutal as hell and is more than satisfactory containing the necessary elements for an instant death metal classic.