Baest – Necro Sapiens [Denmark]
Released: March 5th, 2021 via Century Media Records
Let’s be honest, Baest’s influences are so obvious that every review of Necro Sapiens will draw attention to classic Swedish death metal comparisons – with more than a little prime Dismember, Bloodbath and Grave providing tutorage – but it’s worth noting that, as far as OSDM goes, Baest are at their very best here; stepping up and delivering a stripped-back lesson in old-school death metal brutality for un-schooled pupils of the genre.
……and there’s not really much more we can say.
If you enjoyed Mikael Åkerfeldt’s time in Bloodbath (circa debut album, Resurrection Through Carnage) then you’ll get a kick out of Simon Olsen’s Åkerfeldt-aping growls. And, if you still spin Dismember and Grave’s early 90’s material on a regular basis, Necro Sapiens will leave you grinning.
So, take Necro Sapiens at face value and you’ll have a great time. Go in expecting something challenging and innovating and you’ll leave disappointed. We suggest you do the former and simply enjoy the retro ride! 7/10
Memoriam – To The End [UK]
Released: 26th March 2021 via Reaper Entertainment
If you don’t know what to expect from a Memoriam album by now, you’re either in denial, shell-shocked or dead.
Memoriam‘s latest bruising collection marks the beginning of a second trilogy of albums, with To The End serving as something of a prologue to the first three Memoriam releases. “Onwards Into Battle” is a huge opener; ably building the mood for the entire album and its slow, heavy, destructive nature is as strong an intro as you’d hope for. Conceptually, we’re in World War I territory (obvs) with Karl Willets’ throaty bellow demanding we march “onwards into battle….one more time” sounding as stupendously heavy as ever.
Unsurprisingly, there’s no huge surprises here as Memoriam‘s distinctive sound and approach hasn’t been unceremoniously fucked with (which is good!).
Cannon fodder take heed, Memoriam‘s To The End is all you need! 8/10
If you’d like, why not read our full review of Memoriam’s To The End. Don’t feel like you have to. Make your own choices.
Marasmus – Necrotic Overlord [United States]
Released: March 20th, 2021 via Transcending Obscurity Records
Featuring members of Unmerciful, US death metal band Marasmus honour the brutal death metal of Suffocation and Devourment – with a smattering of Decide‘s evil intent – on their third album, Necrotic Overlord.
As savage as they come, Marasmus are channeling the old-school while keeping an eye on the future and their bone-breaking blend of both brutality and technicality offers up a veritable feast of death metal nuggets to devour!
As adept at more direct bangers such as the blast-beat riddled “Insurrection” as they are in embracing a more progressive edge – check out “Carrion Ascension” – Marasmus have delivered one of the most convincingly cacophonous death metal albums of 2021. 8/10
Honourable mentions: Crypts – Coven Of The Dead / Devotion – The Harrowing / Dipygus – Bushmeat / Putrescine – The Fading Flame…..and probably a ton more but this is your lot for now!
Did we forget anyone? Politely pop your suggestions in the comments below and we’ll have a natter about it. Lovely.