Saturday, November 5, 2011
Funerus - Reduced to Sludge
By a quick show of hands, how many of you like filthy, doomy and all around evil sounding death metal? If you said yes, then you will definitely enjoy Funerus' long awaited sophomore album "Reduced to Sludge." It's a shame that this band isn't more well known because they are fantastic and anyone who has heard their debut album "Festering Earth" knows that. A band that most people are probably more familiar with, though, is a death metal band that hails from the same place as Funerus and even features a mutual member. That band is Incantation. That's right, the same Incantation who has decimated listeners for over 20 years now, shares mainman John McEntee with Funerus, so that alone should tell you that this band is the real deal.
Now that the introduction is out of the way, let's talk about the sound of this record. First of all, the production here is top notch. The sound is heavy, clear and still manages to retain an evil and dirty feel. Every doom-laden chord and riff hits the listener like a ton of bricks and every melody adds to the sinister sound. The drums and bass do a terrific job of making sure that "Reduced to Sludge" is as heavy as possible, as well as make sure it has the tightest sound. And of course the vocals are equally impressive. Jill McEntee delivers horrifying growls that really complete the Funerus sound, similar to the way that Chris Reifert (Autopsy) does.
The album starts the way any great album should, and that's with one of the better tracks in "Behind the Door." The track begins with an eerie and dark sounding melody that fades in and is closely followed by heavy chords and drums that immediately let the listener know they're in for something great. The rest of the track is more along the mid-paced side of the tracks, but Funerus proves they can effectively mix some faster riffs with the doomier elements, especially on the track "Bedpan Commando." The faster verses move along extremely smooth as McEntee's savage vocals lead the way before being slammed with heavier interludes, making this one of the more memorable tracks that is sure to captivate listeners for quite some time. And then there is arguably the best track on the record in the title track. A song that conveys the act of being reduced to sludge perfectly as it starts with some nice death metal tremolos only to be followed by doom inspired riffs that are so vile sounding the listener feels as if they are now covered in sludge.
At the end of the day, "Reduced to Sludge" won't be remembered as a landmark death metal album, but it certainly does serve as a great reminder that there is still quality death metal to be heard in 2011.
"Behind the Door"
"Reduced to Sludge"
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Final Rating - 4.3/5 or 86%.