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Septycemia > Frontiers of Medieval Prognosis > Reviews
Septycemia - Frontiers of Medieval Prognosis

Bubonic Strangury Phlegm - 80%

Vaseline1980, September 18th, 2023
Written based on this version: 2018, CD, Pathologically Explicit Recordings

Don't you just love it when your different interests collide? This little platter does just that for me, combining bone-crunching death metal brutality with a historical concept around The Black Death. As someone who spends a lot of his time reading books about the Middle Ages while annoying the neighbors with all kinds of aural torment, I can't help but having heaps of fun with this four track EP.

The music on offer is a massive dose of brutal death metal, pretty much by the book, but executed with fervour and enthusiasm. Like their biggest influence Brodequin, the band deals in downtuned guitar work backed by relentless blasting percussion and a guttural stream of vocal vomit pouring forth. If there's such a thing like brutal death metal bingo, your card would be full in no time when held up next to this release. You've heard all this before on albums by Abominable Putridity, Guttural Secrete, Embodied Torment and the already mentioned Brodequin, but the enthusiasm at play here makes it a more than valid exercise in brutality. The production does not let the music down either, because it's heavy and pretty direct, with the bass even audible for once. The vocals and snare drum do push the swarming guitars somewhat into the background, but this does not deteriorate the brutality all that much, the music does not lose its demented edge because of it.

To establish the right atmosphere for the lyrical concept about the plague to play out, the band has used spoken pieces from the BBC documentary "The Black Death" to provide the narrative. Because, you know, guttural vocalization does not lend itself too well for story telling, you'll understand. Usually I'm only very seldom taken with spoken samples on an album, but here it actually adds to the concept. I admit that it's the history nerd in me that grants this leniency to the samples, but I'm going to state that without them, this would just be another brutal death metal release to chuck onto the pile. The fact that it is 4 spoken intro samples against 3 actual songs is also (a bit reluctantly) forgiven, but I would not have minded a fourth chunk of aural violence by the band.

So there, a good deal above decent, albeit not so original brutal death metal release, with a cool concept to boot. Even if you're not into the history of the European Middle Ages like me, you still have 3 bloody chunks of death metal concrete to sink your teeth in. A way cool release, well worthy of attention in my book.