Released: 2016, Unspeakable Axe Records
Reviewer: Peter Atkinson
While it's not as overtly grotesque a moniker as, say, Prostitute Disfigurement, Anal Vomit, Diarrhea Planet or the incomparable Shitfucker, there is something about the name Sewercide that makes you go “Ewwww!” Perhaps it's what it leaves to the imagination – it is for me anyway.
The music on the full-length debut by the Australian thrash/death metal mob, however, is more gnarly than nasty. The album's rough-and-tumble sound is as about as raw and primitive as it gets, seeming somewhere between a demo or live rehearsal caught on tape. Dirty deeds done dirt cheap, indeed.
But Immortalized In Suffering's warts and all, plug in and play purity is not without a certain charm. Its guitars are frantic and scraggly, the drums clangorous and the bass – and the guitar solos, for that matter - mostly hidden in whatever approximates a mix. There's really no high or low end. It's all a mid-range snarl and scratch. But it's also as aggressive as it is abrasive, and offers plenty of spunk.
Immortalized recalls early Autopsy, Obituary or Death with its chug-and-churn delivery and bassist Tobi Zama's raspy, heaving vocals, but without the overtly gory subtext or the crassness that the band's name implies. Its thrashier side, highlighted by the band's unbridled energy, brings to mind Demolition Hammer. And there is even a hint of old hardcore here and there, as on the snub-nosed “Acrimoniously Disharmonized” or the menacing groove that leads into the closing track “Eternal (In Spirit).”
Still, there is not the calculating “old schooledness” one so often finds in bands with obvious old school influences. The crudeness of the overall experience here seems genuine – the result of a shoe-string budget, austere facilities or both – and it's the sound more so than the songs, or any obvious intent, that gives the album most of its throwback feel. And that the band don't cheapen things by opting for the seemingly obvious grotesquerie offers further evidence that they may be smarter than appearances would make it seem.