Released: 2005, Regain Records
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Defleshed is well known by all fans of extreme death/thrash metal. They were founded by guitar player Lars Löfvén back in 1991, the debut MCD came 94 and was named MA BELLE SCALPELLE. During 96, the band was joined by one of the fastest and most skilled drummers in the world: Mathias Modin (also a member of Dark Funeral). In 2002 the band signed on for their current label and released the album ROYAL STRAIGHT FLESH. Their next album FAST FORWARD came the following year and it was re-released ‘cause the original release from 1999 was sold out and wasn’t available in any store.
Defleshed are a three piece band and besides Mathias and Lars we have Gustaf on lead vocals and bass.
All of the music and lyrics on this 12 track album are written by Lars and Gustaf and among these songs they have put a cover of Mötley Crüe’s song “Red Hot”. It looks like Gustaf and Lars have played with words and titles this time ‘cause the songs are called “Stripped to the bone”, “Bulldozed (back to basic)”, “Grind and rewind”, “May the flesh be with you” and “Over and out”.
The material sounds really great and nothing out of the ordinary when it comes to this band - you know what you’re going to get when you buy an album with Defleshed. The titles of the songs point out that the band doesn’t take themselves too seriously, that’s something that’s quite rare in the music industry and that’s only positive. The full title of the album is apparently “an audio assault RECLAIM THE BEAT in twelve rounds”.
The band chose to stay in their home town of Uppsala and record the album in Dug-Out Studio by Daniel Bergstrand (In Flames, Meshuggah, Strapping Young Lad etc). It was mixed by Daniel and Örjan Örnkloo and produced by Lars and Gustaf.
Gustaf and Lars have captured the essence of Defleshed and you can instantly hear when you pop in the album that this is the death/thrash trio from Uppsala. The music is extremely hard and furious as well as brutal and aggressive. Mathias’ fast drum play and Gustaf’s brutal lead vocals are at the top of the mix. Add to that Lars’ mean guitar play and you have what Defleshed are all about.
The only song that contains lead guitar is the cover “Red Hot” and I think that they have really managed to do this cover totally in their own way, it sounds like a song by their own and that’s the was a cover should sound in my book.
Mathias shows once again that he’s one of the best drummer in the world today, his really energetic and extremely fast and I don’t understand how he can keep up the amazing speed he has through a whole show.
Defleshed took their first trembling step towards today’s sound on the album UNDER THE BLADE from 97. By the time they refined their sound and on the 99 year album FAST FORWARD they had found a solid ground to stand on and by know they have absolutely got their own style and sound, you can compare this band to Motörhead, Dio and Saxon in the way that you always known what you can expect. I don’t think that they can take this any further musicwise without changing profile or music genre but on the other hand why change a winning concept. The guys calls their music style solid metal and that’s just what it is.
I’m a big fan of Defleshed and this album is a success in my ears. The only thing that I’m not too happy about is the short play time: they run through 12 tracks on 36 minutes and that’s quite short if you look on the price for a CD today in Sweden. Besides this I have only positive comments about RECLAIM THE BEAT.
The cover looks really brutal just like the music is and I can’t imagine that any older fans are going to be disappointed by this album. This is well played death/thrash metal at it's absolutely best and the guys wants to RECLAIM THE BEAT from all the crappy music we hear nowadays.