Skeletal Remains – Devouring Mortality

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Reviewed: April, 2018
Released: 2018, Dark Descent Records
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz

Thanks to a last minute cancellation, I had the pleasure to catch Skeletal Remains twice at MDF XV last year. And as good as their first performance at Ram’s Head was that weekend, the California quartet totally owned the audience at Baltimore Soundstage the following night. With a combination of youthful energy, old school death metal worship, and the chops to combine both into some kind of unholy superpower, by the time they left the stage that night it was clear that Skeletal Remains were destined for bigger things.

Bigger things in the form of a massive distribution deal with Century Media for their forthcoming 3rd full length release, DEVOURING MORTALITY. Featuring 11 tracks of classic death metal, DEVOURING MORTALITY is the perfect nostalgia trip to introduce Skeletal Remains to the broader metal community. Skeletal Remains clearly and unapologetically worship at the altar of late 80’s/early 90’s death metal and owe a significant nod of acknowledgement to early Pestilence, Morgoth and Death.  But the songs are delivered confidently enough that the album that feels comfortably familiar without sounding like a nostalgia shtick.

The riffs are fast and chunky, the solos are slick, clean and to the point, and vocalist Chris Monroy sounds like he could sub for both Martin Van Drunen and James Tardy should either throat be unable to fulfill their commitments. The song titles read like they were spit out of a random death metal song title generator that combines one or more horrible thread with an anchor concept – “Torture Labyrinth”, “Grotesque Creation”, “Mortal Decimation”, “Lifeless Manifestation”…you get the idea, but at least it’s honest to the blueprint they’re following. Hell, even Dan Seagrave did the cover art. That’s about as legit as you can get.

None of this would mean anything if the songs weren’t any good, and they are. Really good. There’s definitely some brand bleed between tracks, but holistically it’s a solid body of metal that’s deftly executed.

It may never be 1988 ever again, but Skeletal Remains give you taste of what the scene was like with DEVOURING MORTALITY. Don’t miss these guys live if they hit your town.


Videos


Track List:
1. Ripperology
2. Seismic Abyss
3. Catastrophic Retribution
4. Devouring Mortality
5. Torture Labyrinth
6. Grotesque Creation
7. Parasitic Horrors
8. Mortal Decimation
9. Lifeless Manifestation
10. Reanimating Pathogen
11. Internal Detestation


Lineup:
Adrius Marquez – Bass
Adrian Obregon – Guitars
Chris Monroy – Guitars, Vocals
Johnny Valles – Drums

Websites:
www.facebook.com/SkeletalRemainsDeathMetal