Reviewed: [January 2021]
Released [2020 Awakening Records]
Reviewer: Peter Atkinson
While they ended their career in 2015 as essentially a grindcore band, Poland’s Parricide began life 20-some years earlier cranking out a death/thrash metal hybrid that echoed the likes of Obituary, Sepultura, Death, Massacre and Malevolent Creation. Formed in Chełm in 1990, the band issued their first three albums in fairly quick succession from 1994-99 before the original lineup began to splinter and the sound steered into grindier territory.
And while they never really caught on like countrymen Behemoth, Vader or even Acid Drinkers in their death metal guise or Ass To Mouth, Antigama or Squash Bowels later in life, Parricide stuck it out for eight full lengths before calling it a day. And they obviously did strike a chord. Awakening Records, from Beijing, China, of all places, has re-issued Parricide’s first three albums, all remastered and festooned with new liner notes, unpublished photos, demo tracks and the usual accoutrements. And since they all came out at the same time, figured it would be best to review the total package.
All three albums – 1994’s Fascination of Indifference, 1996’s Accustomed to Illusion and 1999’s Crude
– deliver fast and furious death/thrash metal that grows modestly more sophisticated each time out. Crude is the easily the most progressive and technically inclined of the bunch, something that seems to have carried over to 2001’s Ill-Treat that included a cover of Cannibal Corpse’s “Hammer Smashed Face.”
Crude actually is an apt description of that album’s raw, crusty production that unfortunately turns the more complex and involved arrangements in something of a sea of mud. Oddly enough, the band’s debut offers the best clarity and overall sound of the three albums here, bringing to mind some of the Scott Burns/Morrisound Studios work from that same era with its
rough-shod guitars, clattering drums and cavernous feel. Accustomed to Illusion falls somewhere between the others, with a beefier but more cluttered presentation that accents the bottom end but buries Mariusz Staniuk’s ursine growl.
All three albums are capably played and certainly aren’t lacking in ferocity. The songs may be rather derivative at times, making the band’s influences rather obvious, but they are delivered with a vigor and purpose that more than makes up for that. Parricide do lack the charismatic presence of someone like Behemoth’s Nergal or Vader’s Piotr Wiwczarek, which may explain why they remained a way underground presence for so long. But you can’t question their conviction for that very same reason.
Regardless, Fascination of Indifference, Accustomed to Illusion and Crude make for a worthwhile trip down memory lane. Even if you have no idea who they were in the first place, Parricide’s old school rabble captures the spirit and energy of the time and is guaranteed to scratch one’s nostalgic itch.