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Underrated and Overlooked Classic - 95%

TheZombieXecutioner, December 23rd, 2012

Based out of Ohio, Necrophagia is one of the earliest if not the earliest death metal band. Disbanding after only releasing one stellar full length that showed some true potential in the band. Displaying some amazing riffs, creepy vocals, and horror inspired lyrics they seemed to be unique for their time, but never got a chance to fully show their talent. That being said on this debut they show a great deal of talent and creative music that is a must hear for old school death metal fans.

Riifs. This album has got them by the fuck load, and everyone is memorable and haunting. Starting with "Forbidden Pleasure" and its great crawling chord progression. "Bleeding Torment" gives a great look into their faster, thrash oriented riffs that are rather enjoyable. Later on in the middle section of the same song they show their true talent of giving great catchy riffs. "Painful Discharge" is another catchy tune that has some great hooks and even a Kreator like intro. The band also shows some slower riffs on "Ancient Slumber" that bring the whole "Evil Dead" feeling to life. Besides the riffs this record has some great Slayer-like solos that totally rule. "Bleeding Torment" and "Painful Discharge" are great examples of a speedy solos that give great chaotic and climatic feeling to the songs. Interestingly guitarist Larry Madison also shows a great deal of acoustic guitar that works perfectly in the opening track "Season of the Dead" and the middle section of "Beyond and Back", which has a great lead over it that is truly haunting. The guitar work can also get complex at times, especially in the last two track "Painful Discharge" and "Beyond and Back". Overall the guitar work is top and the only real issue is they are kind of quite, but just turn the volume all the way up and you shouldn't have much of a problem.

Killjoy makes for a great vocalist in these recording. Provided with a rusty creepy voice that sounds like a rotting zombie was shuffled into the studio to supply vocals, Killjoy really fits well with the music and lyrical content. Mostly telling horror stories based on death, murder, zombies, and even "Evil Dead". The lyrics can be cheese, but what do you expect? They are actually rather fun with lines like, "Walk among the night if you dare I have no name I'm your worst fucking nightmare" and "The need to feel you suffer Grows stronger everyday The hatred on my face Will bring you to your grave."

Bill James does a solid job on bass giving some supportive lines on "Forbidden Please" and "Painful Discharge" The bass is surprisingly audible and can be heard grinding in the back supporting the guitars on "Abomination" and very prominently on "Terminal Vision" and even on "Insane for Blood". The bass tone is rather nice, very clean, no muddy distortion. The drums are also very great. Giving great simple beats on a kit that sounds as if it was decaying in the studio. This isn't a bad thing at all, I actually really love the rusty and simple beats on this record. "Reincarnation" has some nice rotting rolls and some clean beats to show. "Ancient Slumber" has a very nice drum break that is very simple. yet I don't know why i like it so much.

In the end this album is incredible underrated and overlooked, as is the band. The riffs rule, the drums and bass are solid, and who wouldn't want to hear a zombie as a singer? Showing some great talent and potential, Necrophagia should definitely be checked out by an metal head wanting to hear some of the earliest forms of death metal and horror lyrics.