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Nihilistic Contentment
March 2005
Released: 2005, Earache Records
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Gabriel C. Zolman

Perhaps one of the most brutal and creative death metal albums to come out this year, Nihilistic Contentment is a ravenous winner, ready to do you in, and a sinister bastard of an album, ready to tie you to the tracks as it twirls its villain mustache. This is really what I think of when I think of “Blackened Death.” I think of chicken, too---but that’s for totally unrelated reasons.

With song titles like “The Human Rape Symphony” and “Swamp Of Decadence,” you really can’t go wrong; although, the opening cut, “Flesh Havoc,” is the real standout. It would be accurate to say it represents an overall statement of intent, and symbol of the band’s capabilities. If you fail to appreciate its brutal aural brainrape, you’re just not going to like this disc at all.

The cover art is deceptive—maybe it means something in Europe. Ignore it—this rocks; seriously, this is the best non-melodic Death Metal album yet released in 2005. (Hurry up, Machetazo!).

Drummer Reno (formerly of Dimmu Borgir, official farm-team for the rest of the Black Metal scene) is an inhuman powerhouse. The man sounds like a machine, and a well-oiled one at that (wait—that doesn’t sound right, does it? Arrghh!! My eyes!). The guitars are up-front, and we like that. The vocals are somewhat varied, from growl to shriek to just sort of a general huffing-and-puffing-with-menace sort of thing.

Traditional Black Metal influences shine through in “Bitter Disciplin,” with a smattering and splattering of Florida Death Metal to round it out. “The Human Rape Symphony” is appropriately vicious (it’s be really fucking sad if it wasn’t…); it’s easily as heavy as anything by Kataklysm, in that swirling chaos sort of way. “Black Walls Of Misery” takes me back to the good old days of Death Metal---I’m reminded a bit of When The Sky Turns Black-era Brutality, but with that blackened aura to it. “Division Of Genocide Pleasure” is more standard fare—it goes for more of the classic Swedish (Sunlight Studios era) sound (the band are from Denmark, though).

A word should be said about the above-par production: well, its…um…above par. The sharpness and precision of the riffing has been sorely missing from the scene in the last several years or so; if you’re fucking sick of bands who tune way down, this might be your release. Admittedly, this is for dedicated Death Metal fans only—the sort of people who buy Vomitory and Zyklon records, and can pronounce “Myrkskog” and “Tchort” correctly on the first try.

While this band has been cranking out records for years, this is their proper Earache debut. Brutal Death fans should show Earache that they’ve made a good decision; buy it.
Track Listing

1.Flesh Havoc
2.Bitter Discipline
3.The Human Rape Symphony
4.Black Walls Of Misery
5.Division Of Genocide
6.Swamp Of Decadence
7.Symbols Of Inhumanity
8.Fix Of Negativity
9.Graveside Mourning Ritual
10.Parasite Paradise


Simon Petersen (aka Smerte) - Vocals
Sigtyr (Martin Thim) - Guitars
Andreas (aka Mephistopheles) - Bass
Morten Siersbæk – Drums

Other reviews

» Berserker Legions
by El Cid

» Nihilistic Contentment
by Gabriel C. Zolman

» Nihilistic Contentment
by Anders Sandvall

Next review: » Exmortem - Nihilistic Contentment
Previous review: » Exmortem - Berserker Legions

Nihilistic Contentment
May 2005
Released: 2005, Earache Records/Sound Pollution
Rating: 3.0/5
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall

Exmortem is another new member to the Earache family that was formed by main man Martin in 1992. After taking a break from Exmortem in order to take the place behind the drums in Dimmu Borgir, Exmortem's drummer, Reno, is now back.

And now it’s time for their 5th album on a new label. Earache's focus is mostly on extreme and brutal acts and Exmortem is no exception to that. The Danish Exmortem chose Antfarm Studios, in Denmark, in which to record NIHILISTIC CONTENTMENT. The studio's owner Tue Madsen (The Haunted, Hatesphere, Mnemic etc) was the producer. Madsen has created an extreme/brutal/hostile and aggressive sounding production that’s just what we could expect from Tue. Exmorten vocalist, Simon, takes the leading position regarding the sound picture along with Martin's riffing. Andreas and Reno have raging speed on the rhythm section and especially Reno is really fast. I can’t understand how he keeps up the speed through the whole album.

The musical description in the band's bio says this is twisted death metal, but I don’t think that this sounds particularly twisted. If you put new brands on a band maybe they find a new fanbase!?! It’s not twisted, but it’s sure death metal. They sound a bit like early Swedish 90’s death metal. Exmortem contributes with some really well played death metal. This is my first acquaintance with Exmortem and the impression I get from the band is that they are not doing anything unique, they simply play death metal and that’s all. But the guys have something that makes them a little bit different from all the other bands in this genre, and that’s their well written material, competent singer, massive production, and skilled drummer. This 10 track album has about 30 minutes and that’s quite enough when it comes to this kind of brutal music. This album is, according to the bio, “A permanent scar in any listeners mind!” and that’s something I can guarantee this album will cause you. This Danish band is a rather pleasant new experience for me since I’m a big fan of 90’s sounding death metal. If you already are a fan of Exmortem, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed on this 5th album. A lot of Danish bands are now up and coming and gladly there are a lot of new bands in different genres. Until now the dominating Danish bands have been Pretty Maides and D.A.D. which are really good bands, but variely is never wrong. But still there is a long way to go before they can be compared to the Swedish metal scene.

Exmortem will be laying waste to the towns and cities with their live performances all over the world this year.

Labels: and
Track Listing

Flesh havoc
Bitter discipline
The human rape symphony
Black walls of misery
Division of genocide pleasure
Swamp of decadence
Symbols of inhumanity
Fix of negativity
Graveside mourning ritual
Parasite paradise


Martin – guitar
Simon – lead vocals
Andreas – bass
Reno – drums

Other reviews

» Berserker Legions
by El Cid

» Nihilistic Contentment
by Gabriel C. Zolman

» Nihilistic Contentment
by Anders Sandvall

Next review: » Exmortus - In Hatred´s Flame
Previous review: » Exmortem - Berserker Legions

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