With a sound that only ever comes from Scandinavia, Svartnad – the second album from The Pete Flesh Deathtrip – may have more in common with Immortal than In Flames and the Gothenburg brigade but an old-school vibe pervades throughout; one which also echoes the primal works of Possessed, early Sodom and the genre-defining Bathory.
While Svartnad is certainly not a carbon copy of these underground legends it’s the atmosphere that draws the most valued comparison. There’s plenty of bands out there screaming, blasting and picking tremolo riffs like their lives depend on it but pure, breathless, skin-crawling atmosphere is damned hard to find. Well, you’ll find it here. The Pete Flesh Deathtrip conjures fevered nightmarish hallucinations as easy as Steve Harris peels off galloping bass riffs and the overall effect is suffocatingly palpable.
Stripped down to its purest essence Svartnad is hate eternal, blacker and bleaker than an untimely meeting with Satan himself on a desolate windswept moor. Ominous bells chime (“Burial Shore”), buzzsaw riffs mesh with the icy sound of prime Immortal (“The Winter Of The Wolves”) and epiglottis eviscerating guttural growls narrate a tortured journey which takes in classic Scandinavian death metal and Bathory’s pioneering Viking metal along the way.
T.P.F.D.T is the real deal. Punchy, classy, honest, intelligent and capable of creeping under your skin with each perfectly considered riff and tormented growl; Svartnad is the complete package and a blackened death/thrash rollercoaster ride of anguished emotion.
One man? Svartnad sounds like the work of legions! 9/10
Pre-order Svartnad now: https://www.criticalmass.se/shop/critical-mass-releases/the-pete-flesh-deathtrip-svartnad-cd/