First thing first, a big thanks to Hellthrasher Productions for introducing me to these two bands. The split features Greece's own Resurgency who deliver with their solid four track demo "Dark Revival" and Sweden's Desolator with their five track demo "Mass Human Pyre," and both of these bands kick copious amounts of ass.
If I had to pick one band that Resurgency resembles the most, it would have to be the almighty Vader. The vocals are pretty similar to those of Peter Wiwczarek, they're very heavy and command the band's brand of death metal extremely well. The majority of the riffs on "Dark Revival" are reminiscent of Vader as well, a lot of tremolo bursts backed with fast paced drums and blast beats. The opening track, as well as the best one "Where Despair Dominates" is very heavy on the tremolo stylings, but there is also a great headbanger of a mid-paced riff placed in between the death metal massacre and it works out brilliantly. The song "Psychosis" is a bit slower and heavier than the first two tracks, but the high level of intensity remains. The demo is ended by the sinister instrumental "Atmosphere in Chaos" and that's exactly what the song conveys. A very haunting song that sets an atmosphere, while retaining that explosive sound from the previous tracks.
Best Songs - "Where Despair Dominates" and "Dark Revival."
The "Mass Human Pyre" demo kicks off with the minute intro "Conjuration of the Watcher," a sample that ends with the agonizing screaming of the words "Arise! Arise! Arise!" and the transition into the title track is excellent. The track begins with a slow, muted chugging of the e-string that is later accompanied by some powerchords before turning into some full on death metal mayhem. Since this band plays death metal and they're from Sweden, you would probably expect for them to sound like just another Dismember or Grave ripoff wouldn't you? Well that isn't the case. The guitar tone isn't the chainsaw tone that we all know and love, but it's heavy and dirty and suits Desolator's brand of death metal perfectly. The vocals on here are the real show-stealer though. They sound like a great mix of Ross Dolan (Immolation) and Lars Petrov (Entombed), as they match the heaviness of Entombed but also have an evil kind of edge to them, similar to the vocals of Immolation. Again, these guys aren't your typical Swedeath band, just take a listen to the doom-laden "Feeding Frenzy." While the melodies sound like something you would hear on "Like An Ever Flowing Stream," the song is a bit more evil and dark sounding which pretty much sums up the sound that Desolator brings to the table.
Best Songs - "Impaled" and "Feeding Frenzy."
So what have we learned today? Well, first that death metal is still alive and well, but you're not going to find it by listening to these tech-wank bands that seem to clog up the mainstream, you need to take a trip to crypts of the underground. And second, both of these bands are fantastic so check them out ASAP.
Be sure to check out Desolator and Resurgency on Facebook!
Final Rating - 4.4/5 or 88%.