Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2021
Encyclopaedia Metallum

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

Privacy Policy

A Simple but Well Executed Death Metal Machine - 70%

hobosock, September 6th, 2019

This album makes no pretense. The revving of the good old Swedish chainsaw cuts through the first low quality sound sample, alerting the listener of the impending Stockholm death metal riot contained in A Scream From the Tomb Below. The unmistakable HM2-like buzz is enough to let you know what to expect: evil sounding riffs comprised of power chords and weird tremolo picked progressions, guttural vocals, and blast beats. Witch Vomit don't break a lot of new ground in their first full length release, choosing instead to concentrate their efforts in the old school death metal style down to 30 minutes of brutality.

In a lot of ways I actually appreciated the concise nature of the album. The songs don't get bogged down into some of the weirder solo and interlude stuff other genre entries have experimented with, and you are never far from an easy headbanger of a riff. The shorter song lengths keep the album from becoming too repetitive. I feel that sometimes there is a pressure for metal tracks to exceed that 5 minute mark, leading to some bland filler in an otherwise interesting song. A Scream From the Tomb Below dispenses with all that and stays focused on intensity instead of quantity.

That's not to say every track is a winner. A fair few of them are forgettable. None of them are bad, but I only find myself wanting to return and listen to about half. Screams From Purgatory, Below the Dirt, Torn From Life, and Twisted Altar of Sin showcase their more inventive riffs and drum grooves.

The vocal work on this album is particularly guttural, in some cases serving as more of a backdrop layer in the song than sitting at the forefront. Sound samples punctuate the album, often marking the end of one track or the beginning of another. The drums pound out a simple driving beat but add a layer of complexity with heavy use of the high hat, which I enjoyed.

It's not the pinnacle of the genre, and it's not defying expectations or adding a new twist, but there are plenty of killer riffs that make this a worthy listen.