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Released: 1999, Maquiavel Music Entertainment
When I read that this was mixed by Fredrik Nordstrom I was very curious as he is the same person who has worked with such great bands as Armageddon, Arch Enemy, In Flames and At The Gates. Well lets say I am not at all disappointed! This is totally brutal melodic Swedish styled death metal from a band who are from Portugal! This is the band's second release and it marks the first release for the new label Maquiavel Music Entertainment.
This is what I like to hear in a death metal band. Malevolence are totally brutal not afraid to incorporate melodic parts with clean guitar and keyboard. There are number of places throughout the CD where you'll stop whatever it is you are doing and go "cool." Whether it be a ripping solo, thundering kick drums, a very diabolical keyboard part, or a clean acoustic passage these guys managed to surprise me. If you like the whole "Gothenburg" sound or the "New Wave of Swedish Death Metal" then PLEASE check these guys out. They'll leave your head spinning and your neck sore for sure. This is up there in terms of finesse, talent and brutality with bands like Arch Enemy and In Flames.
I won't bother picking out any favorite tracks form this 9 track CD as the first 8 tracks are ALL brutal, melodic, intense, ripping and totally METAL. The track "Hunters of the Red Moon" was very cool though with the clean guitar part backing the verses...sounds very original and it's catchy! The ONLY thing about this CD which I don't like is the last and title track on the CD. I'll call it "The Ballad of Cookie Monster." This song is way too funny to take seriously...it's all slow and "evil" sounding with lots of keys and shit but the cookie monster spoken/sung passages over this was a riot. I doubt the band tried to write a ballad to Cookie himself but man they have done it!! Don't take this the wrong way, the other 8 songs on the CD are NOTHING like this one and the vocals on them are all brutal a la Arch Enemy.