DEFLESHED – Reclaim The Beat

DEFLESHED - Reclaim The Beat


Regain Records
Release date: April 4, 2005

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In many ways, this album is self-describing. The subtitle ‘An Audio Assault in Twelve Rounds’ likens the set to a boxing match; hard-hitting and relentless. The first track, “Stripped To The Bone,” aptly reflects the band’s primal approach, which sticks to the meat of Death Metal, with no extra fat or waste. Likewise, the songs are all short, with most coming in at just a few seconds North or South of the 3-minute mark.

They also show a sense of sick humor by continuing the macabre Metal wordplay with their name. A previous release was called Royal Straight Flesh, and this time they take on Star Wars with the cleverly titled “May The Flesh Be With You.”

Vocalist Gustaf Jorde groans out the vocals in a dry, corpse-like rasp that is similar to Immortal’s Abbath. His best performance is on the cover of Mötley Crüe’s “Red Hot,” which beats the original by a knockout. When this guy growls “Can’t you see we’re out for blood,” he sounds a lot more convincing than Vince Neil. Guitarist Lars Lofven hacks off some prime chops as well.

Perhaps, though, the most remarkable performer of the trio is Dark Funeral drummer Mathias Modin. He maintains a frantic pace throughout the record, but doesn’t sound like he employs triggers as heavily as other drummers who achieve similar beat-per-minute rates. Like a prize fighter, he seems to rely instead on old-fashioned fast-footwork. For every good slugger, a tough trainer is an essential part of the team, and producer Daniel Berstrand has done an exemplary job of crafting a sound that is punchy and clean, yet still retains an old school sonic quality that suits Defleshed’s rawness.

The one drawback to keeping it simple is that the songs do begin to sound too similar after a while, and this becomes particularly evident over the last four songs of the album. Perhaps not everyone may want to step into the ring with Defleshed on a daily basis, but they are a tough opponent to beat when a sound thrashing is what you seek.

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