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Album Review: Coffin Rot – A Monument To The Dead

By now, everybody and their brother within the death metal community has heard of Tomb Mold, a band that broke some real ground with their latest effort. But recently I discovered a fitting counterpart to them from Portland known as Coffin Rot, and their debut album A Monument To The Dead is quite impressive. This reeks of foul vocals and subject matter that is flooded in a muddy swamp of riffs and crushing tones. Maybe not quite what we’d call brutal death metal, but the early Cannibal Corpse vibes and disgusting delivery brings us close to it.

As they should be, things are kept relatively straightforward, and these gory numbers are mostly on the shorter side besides the final track. Thus, it’s an easier listen for those that dig this style. “Miasma Of Barbarity” is just as great as the song title suggests,  molding tremolos, slow-burning rhythms, and hoarse riffs together. The solo, on the other hand, is clean and concise, standing proudly above the muddy foundation. “Saw Blade Suicide” has strength in the ear-splitting bridges and contains a bit of a punk-type attack, which adds to Coffin Rot’s ability to shift gears smoothly.

If that isn’t enough, “Necrotized” capitalizes on this even more by making the tempo shifts significantly more rapid, pulled off in smaller amounts of time. The drumming plays a large role in this, and usually, you can find these behind the chorus. The only spot where A Monument To The Dead burns out is in the seven-minute closer “Coffin Rot.” Where I was expecting a doomy number with solid progression, they rehashed everything that was already done, preventing it from going far. If it weren’t for that final song, this would be damn near perfect.

Gore-obsessed death metal can overdo it, and more often than not it doesn’t stand out at all. That’s thankfully not the case here. The production, the writing, and the workable length allowed this to capture the perfect mood, and the fact that its release is near Halloween makes things even more fitting. Old school death metal fans that like the filthier bands, give this a spin!

A Monument To The Dead will be released on October 18th, 2019 through Blood Harvest Records. It’s available in CD, colored vinyl, and cassette formats, and you can pre-order them here. But hurry, they’re going fast!

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