In our ongoing series of guest columns, we’ve asked a bunch of metal’s heaviest hitters to provide us with a list of five albums they think will change you — either for the better or worse. Today’s list comes compliments of Murder Construct’s Leon del Muerte (also of Exhumed and Impaled). The band has a new album coming that you can order here.
Carcass — Symphonies of Sickness
Pretty obvious, I guess, judging by my involvement with both Impaled and Exhumed. Also the first grind/death metal release I ever heard. At first, I thought it sucked. I remember listening to it while playing Battle Toads and switching it in favor of South Of Heaven. But at some point it just turned on me and suddenly, anything without blast beats was totally wimpy and unlistenable. The imagery, the medical terminology, even the guitar tone. Carcass completely consumed my entire world and I eventually beat Battle Toads.
Dismember — Like An Everflowing Stream
Though Harv has frequently disputed my assertion that this is the ultimate in Swedish brutality (he’s more of a traditional “Left Hand Path” sorta guy), I maintain that this is the toughest, shit-kickingest album to come from the hyperborean realms. The tone of all the instruments, the delivery, the vocal spewage… not one second of this is pussy shit, it’s one killer riff after another and one of my biggest influences. There’s a shitload of other bands from this area and era that I could mention that are among my favorites, but this sits atop the pile.
Terrorizer — World Downfall
For me, the album that absolutely defines grind. If you stray too far from the Terrorizer path, then you cannot be a grindcore band, which is why I have relented to using the tag ‘deathgrind’ for my own band. This is the only good-sounding album that ever came outta Morrisound, and it just bends you over a barrel for the full 36 minutes. It would be a “Whirlwind Struggle” and a “Storm of Stress” if you didn’t have a “Fear Of Napalm” after being “Ripped To Shreds” by this album’s “Strategic Warheads.” You will be “Human Prey” if you think you “Need To Live” after the “Dead Shall Rise.” Okay. Alright. Sorry for that “Injustice…”
Disrupt — Unrest
Yeah, yeah, yeah, it’s the Extreme Noise Terror of New England (as opposed to Old England…) Surprisingly punchy production for the time and seriously agressive tunes, with like 50 fucking awesome vocalists. There’s only one dud on this album (“Neglected”) and even that one isn’t that bad. This came out right when death metal was getting extra shitty and provided a great fix for people trying to freak the fuck out.
Nasum — Human 2.0
Yeah, I know. I’m supposed to like Inhale/Exhale, which has a veritable plethora of amazing tracks, but this one is the one. The production, the slight experimentation, the crazed aggression. This album sounds like a couple of dudes completely going of the rails. Some people think they went too far onto the wimpy side with this one, but I think this one has the perfect balance of experimentation and solid ass-kickery. Mieszko’s furious vocals are unparalleled on this release. I wish that Anders had contributed a bit more, but hey, still a solid 10 fucking skulls.
Bonus: Rotten Sound — Murderworks
I include this one because it’s so closely related to Nasum, at least the part of my brain that processes crazy music. It’s like these guys sat down, wrote a letter addressed to me saying “it’s okay to make songs that have nothing but blast beats in them, Leon. Love, Rotten Sound.” I took that letter and hung it on my wall and stared at it every day for like 10 years before crapping out my own palsied attempts at emulation. Thanks, Finland!!
Man, that’s fucking hard. I wanna write more about Bolt Thrower, Demilich, Wolfpack, Martyrdod, Napalm Death, HHIG/Tragedy, Repulsion, Carnage, Pungent Stench, Entombed, blah blah blah. Serious, fuck doing lists where I can’t put down like 1,000 bands.
If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.