Cadaver - Necrosis

posted by Greg, Monday December 13, 2004 @ 02:01:47 PM

Artist: Cadaver (http://www.earache.com/bands/cadaver/cadaver.html)
Album: Necrosis
Release Date: April 20th, 2004
Label: Earache



Rating: 8/10

Recommended Tracks: Evil Is Done, Goatfather, Unholy Death

Let's face it - the metal world, in its 30-plus years of existence, has given birth to several highly overused cliches within the genre. Think of how many times you've heard a metal song about death, someone dying, gory imagery ripped straight from a medical textbook, or seen over the top disgusting artwork on the album cover along with a near unreadable band name. Upon first glance Cadaver's new album Necrosis is guilty of all these counts. It definitely seems to fit the description of a cookie-cutter death metal album that you've heard and seen a million times before, and you'd think your suspicions were confirmed if you just listened to the first couple of tracks. If you dig deeper into Cadaver though (down to about the spine or small intestine I suppose), you get rewarded with an absolutely sick album that harkens back to the thrashier days of yore and gore.

The story of the band Cadaver is an interesting one - the band formed in Norway in 1988 and have been together off and on for over 16 years, yet they have produced only three albums in that time (in fact, this is their first album released since 1992!). Thus, they really missed the Viking-manned boat as far as getting in with the infamous Norwegian black metal scene of the 1990's, although it may have been a blessing in disguise since pretty much every band in that scene is either long gone or musically irrelevant these days. A few of the band members over the years formed a similar band called Cadaver Inc. who also put out one album on Earache, but through it all the original Cadaver crew remained together in spirit if not actually in the studio. To say this album was worth the wait is probably a bit of an understatement, since I doubt anyone who was a fan of theirs in 1992 ever expected to seem them again by the year 2004, but if an album this good comes from the results of 12 years of silence then let me say I am eagerly looking forward to what they have in store in the year 2016.

Going back to the cliche analogy, the first two tracks of this album certainly don't help in establishing any sort of difference between them and a million other death bands out there trying to make it happen. The songs are goofily called "Necro As Fuck" and "Decomposing Metal Skin", but you'll probably hear them as "Tired Death Metal Song Done To Death Part 1 and Part 2". Right around the third track "Evil Is Done", however, Cadaver adapt to more of a throwback, gritty, grimy ultra-speedy thrash vibe that just sounds absolutely terrific, and they manage to maintain this throughout the rest of the album. It's kinda hard to explain the sound and feel of the album without actually hearing it - imagine the heyday of the thin, intentionally underproduced Norwegian black metal of the early-mid 90's if it were produced crystal clear while maintaining that aura of we-don't-give-a-fuck - and you'll get the idea of what Cadaver accomplishes on this excellent album.

The key word there is album - while the first two songs don't do anything for me, as a whole this is an excellent release. The album definitely finishes a lot stronger than it starts, and if they cut the first two tracks off completely it would be a lot better. The first two almost seem like filler tracks recorded by a different band, but from track 3 on it's all the business of sick, crusty, demented thrash-grind, and business is very, very good. My only question is why these guys couldn't have been doing this all along? 12 years and 2 songs off your first album in 12 years is a long damn time to wait for something good guys!

Going retro seems to be all the rage these days in all genres of music from rock to rap to hip-hop, and the metal world is no different. There are bands like Exodus, Death Angel, Morbid Angel, etc. who were kings of the metal world 20 years ago still putting out relevant material, and there are bands like Cadaver who, even though they've been around alomst as long themselves, haven't put out enough material to become heavyweights like the aforementioned bands. Cadaver's tribute of sorts to the old sound is done much better than the average band's attempt at going retro, since they have taken the old school thrash sound and fused it with what they are as a band to create something new and exciting out of something old and already done before. Hopefully it won't take them another 12 years to put out another album, because my appetite for more Cadaver has definitely been whetted now. In fact, I dare say that one of the best decisions I made in all of 2004 was listening to this whole album instead of just giving up on it after the first 2 tracks, and I encourage you to do the same if you check this one out.

- Greg

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