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A grandiose masterpiece of destruction - 96%

fatalizer85, August 5th, 2011

I ll start things off by telling you that if you consider yourselves fans of grindcore, goregrind and even plain death metal this is one of the releases you NEED to own! Repulsion may not be one of the first bands that you come across when you are starting to get into the extreme sound, but in my opinion is one of utmost importance to really get acquainted with how things evolved in the genre of grind/death.

This album is the living proof that if a band can combine its influences in a stunning way and is obviously filled with a passion to crush everything in its path, the result is punishing to say the least. In the 2cd reissue of this album that contains the demos, we can easily comprehend that the origins of this album can be traced back to the golden era of 80 s hardcore/thrash and even proto death/black metal bands (celtic frost, bathory ,venom, slayer, siege, ripcord to name a few) . By releasing their first (and only) album, Repulsion should be memorized as the one album-miracle (along with the likes of Terrorizer etc.).

Should someone use two words to describe this cd,those should be ‘relentless’ and ‘atmosferic’. Firstly, while listening to ‘Horrified, you will find yourself not wanting to sit down even for an instant. At the moment each and every song kicks in you can feel a rush of energy and an urge for unstoppable mayhem and destruction… I myself have never encountered such a straightforward sonic onslaught, one that never lets up in the entire album! You can surely feel that the band s goal was to deliver a no breaks-carnage, one to surely push the boundaries of extremity at the time.

Another characteristic of this album is that each instrument feels like an essential component to reaching this devastating result. Firstly, the guitars have one of the best tones you ll come across, falling somewhere between the sound of hardcore and proto/death thrash. The guitar parts are not something difficult for someone to play, on the contrary they are pretty simple in pretty much all of the songs, no exhibition of technicality to be found here. That does not extract even an inch of power from this release, as they are definitely well executed and convey a rotting atmosphere all over the place.

The bass was definitely one to shock the audience at the time. Sure, there s a distinct Discharge influence in the manner of playing, but Repulsion took it to the next level of madness, as it s defitinely way more downtuned than in any other contemporary band. What you get here is a fuzzy wall of noise, but one to sustain a sense of evilness and heaviness to the music and even provide you with moments you ll want to revisit (check the intro of Festering Boils!).

The drums are obviously worthy of praise, especially considering the speed the infamous ‘Dave Grave’ developed on this album! His playing far surpassed the limits set for fast playing and paved the way for a whole new generation of bands who set out to match his intense drumming! Despite that, technicality is once again not an option, as we are talking about simple stuff here, no fancy fills or anything(especially compared to monsters like Nile and Hate Eternal), but still it matches the music greatly and gets the carnage going!

And last but not least, we have the vocals. I must say I really prefer Scott Carlson’s performance on this album over the one in the demos and even the live shows. What you get here is a unique mix of venom-meets possessed-meets death,and this injected with a hardcore attitude! His voice can transform from a hardcore-ish one to an exceedingly rotting one, making you believe you have a festering zombie handling the vocals! Without Scott a lot of the atmosphere on this album would be missing as I can’t immagine anyone that could transmit the evilness and rotten feeling that is required better than him!

Concluding, I usually tend to disagree with certain people who criticize Horrified as being repetitive and lacking the capability to stand side to side to classic albums. I reckon that there is plenty of variation to be found here! What we have here are songs with whirlwind-like riffs that will definitely make your neck bleed (Eaten Alive,Horrified) , blistering mid paced songs (Black Breath,Radiation Sickness) , and even proto death n roll traces (Bodily Dismemberment) ! As for its influence on the metal scene and durability in time, better ask bands like Napalm Death (who even today use the intro of Stench of burning death during their live performances!) , Mortician (who definitely had a real crush on how the bass sounded in Horrified,and even more…), Entombed (Black Breath cover and Radiation Sickness as Nihilist) and lots more who claim to have gained a lot from this underappreciated band! To sum up, even though they managed to release only a full length (and an ep), Repulsion is and should be acknowledged as a definite milestone in the history of extreme music.