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Black Dahlia Murder
August 2003
Released: 2003, Metal Blade
Rating: 0.5/5
Reviewer: Night of the Realm

Oh great. The Haunted have a new album.

Oh great. The Haunted moved to Detroit, too.

Well, it’s not quite as bad as The Haunted manage, but The Black Dahlia Murder carries on the same visions of The New Wave Of Swedish ‘Tard-Core as The Haunted/At The Gates/The Forsaken etc.etc. etc.

Known locally more for their shit-talking about other local bands, and abyssmal live performances (ask anyone who saw ‘em at St. Andrews with Blind Guardian), The Black Dahlia Murder is typical Swedish post-Gothenburg death metal (I’d swear that they bought a couple used hooks from an At the Gates yard sale). Obviously, the concept of songwriting is unknown to the band because the band is incapable of writing a simple 3-minute song without resorting to a fill of blastbeats or recycled leads, or the ever-popular “let’s slow things down with a core-ish breakdown so we can get the most out of our one riff.” The only thing saving this band is their root in legitimate death metal.

We actually do get some catchy melodic lead work about halfway through “Elder Misanthropy,” and a couple decent riffs, making this one probably the only tolerable 2 and a half minutes on the disc. “Contagion” has some good ideas as well; “Thy Horror Cosmic” actually makes it through the song without running terribly afoul, and the middle passage of “The Blackest Incarnation” starting around the 2-minute mark pulls off a good Dark Tranquillity style. The closing three tracks are among the four longest on the album and have the least ideas running through them.

In all, The Black Dahlia Murder could possibly trim the album to a halfway acceptable 5-track EP, but with 10 tracks on a 36-minute album, the creativity is stretched thin enough.

By the way, Black Dahlia Murder, I was most impressed by the way you handle criticism of your band. Sending your girlfriends over to confront people at your shows when your band is responsible for the sucking shows great fortitude on your part. The Black Dahlia Murder – UNHALLOWED is the perfect example that just because a band is local and underground does not mean they are worthy of attention or support. Fuck trendwhoring bands. Fuck these primadonna cunts.

For REAL Detroit Melodic Death Metal, check out Summer Dying ( or Kenshiro (
Track Listing

1. Unhallowed
2. Funeral Thirst
3. Elder Misanthropy
4. Cantagion
5. When The Last Grave Has Emptied
6. Thy Horror Cosmic
7. The Blackest Incarnation
8. Hymn For The Wretched
9. Closed Casket Requiem
10. Apex


Trevor Strnad (vocals)
David Lock (bass)
John Kempainen (guitar)
Brian Eschbach (guitars)
Cory Grady (drums)

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