Released: 2004, Metal Blade
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland
Metal Blade has always been one of the “bigshots” in metal, but take a look at a small slice of their impressive roster of quality death metal bands: Cannibal Corpse, Vader and long-running German legends, Fleshcrawl. Cannibal Corpse has already released one of the best albums of 2004 with THE WRETCHED SPAWN and Vader’s upcoming THE BEAST, wil surely send heads rolling, as well. As for Fleshcrawl, the band has just unleashed their latest offering, MADE OF FLESH, on the headbanging public and it is a ferocious chunk of old school death metal. Amazingly, this is the band’s seventh release and despite being 12 years into their career, Fleshcrawl shows no signs of slowing down at all.
Tracks like “Beneath A Dying Sun,” “Into the Depths of No Return” and “When Life Surrenders” have a bit of melody to them, but still remain brutally heavy. “Made of Flesh” features some excellent double-tracked vocals and is one of the heavier tracks on the CD. “Scourge of the Bleeding Haunted” and “Flesh Bloody Flesh” feature stellar vocals from Sven Gross and a killer riff courtesy of Oliver Grbavac and Mike Hanus. “Forged in Blood” allows Bastian Herzog’s double-bass skills to shine as he absolutely pummels the skins throughout this track. “Damned in Fire” opens with an improbably section before slowing down for a brilliant guitar solo only to pick up speed again.
What makes this album stand out from the rest of the death metal pack is that, like Decapitated, Fleshcrawl isn’t afraid of inserting a melody into the brutality to make the songs heavy, yet accessible. Gross’ vocals are also intelligible for the most part and don’t become monotonous over the course of a listen. MADE OF FLESH is worth checking out for fans of Dismember, Kataklysm, Decapitated or any metal fan wanting to hear solid, uncompromising death metal.
KILLER KUTS: “Beneath a Dying Sun,” “Scourge of the Bleeding Haunted,” “Into the Depths of No Return,” “Flesh Bloody Flesh”