Much has been made over the years of the Finnish black metal and death/doom scenes, but you rarely hear about death metal bands from the Land of A Thousand Lakes. Anyone who closely follows Dark Descent Records likely knows of Desolate Shrine, Corpsessed, Lie In Ruins, Krypts, and Gorephilia, all of whom have released albums with the label. There was considerable buzz surrounding the debut EP from Blooming Carrions earlier this year. But there’s not really a death metal equivalent to black metallers Archgoat or Beherit or death/doom outfits Amorphis and Swallow the Sun that just about every fan of the genre knows.
It’s entirely too soon to predict whether Obscure Burial will have much of an impact on Finnish death metal’s worldwide profile, but there’s no question that their self-titled debut full-length, which drops on December 15 via Invictus Productions and that we’re thrilled to be streaming in full today here at the Vault, has all of the necessary elements to attract the attention of the wider death metal underground.
Originally formed in Turku in 2012, the quartet have been slowly developing their craft over the last several years, releasing a pair of demos between 2012-14, and then falling relatively silent ever since. I have no idea what they were up to in the interim (aside from swapping out a bass player last year), but based on the results it was time well spent. Obscure Burial, which includes four reworked tracks from those earlier demos and four newer compositions, is 37 minutes of putrid, sinister death metal of the highest order.
Obscure Burial’s modus operandi is clear right from the first few seconds of “Lucilia Silvarum,” which opens with a chorus of buzzing flies. That decaying atmosphere persists for the entire rest of the album, as one sulfur-soaked riff after another comes vomiting forth from the speakers. Add in a series of frenetic King-meets-Azagrhoth leads and you’ve got one of the better death metal guitar albums in recent memory – seriously, if the truly unhinged guitar solos in “Imago Mortis” and “Transcending Deity” don’t make you feel an evil little tingle in your special parts, you might be reading the wrong site. Add in L.K.’s not quite growled, not quite shrieked vocals and the rolling, thunderous drumming of K.S. and this one becomes a must-listen.
So even though Obscure Burial may wear some of their influences—Necrovore, Morbid Angel, early Incantation, perhaps even a bit of Demilich—on their rotting sleeves, Obscure Burial is far from just a worshipful tribute to those influences. Give the full album a listen below, and don’t blame us for the whiplash that will likely ensue.
Obscure Burial will be available on December 15 via Invictus Productions.