TEMPLE OF MYSTERY, 2021
The past decade or so has seen a huge resurgence in the sound of Dismember and Entombed; their influence can be heard in everything from cool hardcore bands like Trap Them and Nails to sterile homogenates like Gatecreeper. The Boss HM-2 pedal, the source of that prototypical Swedish death metal guitar tone, was recently reissued after years of public demand, including petitions that received thousands of signatures.
More cynical people are probably sick of this trend, but Outre-Tombe do it better than most. 2015's Répurgation was a blast of catchy old school death metal, and its follow up Nécrovortex, while slightly lesser, was still solid. Their new album marks a shift in sound for the group. While their previous release was brittle and craggy, Abysse Mortifère is a warmer, more natural and "analog" recording with rolled-off treble like an old cassette just unearthed from a dust-covered shoebox. The production is a perfect representation of Matt Carr's vintage horror magazine cover art.
Frédéric Tremblay's vocals sound great here; his manic howls lie somewhere between Chris Reifert and Martin van Drunen and unlike a lot of singers in this style he has a knack for hooky vocal rhythms. More emphasis is placed on groove than previous releases, with slower, doomlike half-time sections strewn about (see: "Cenobytes" and the end of "Haruspex"). Autopsy oozes from the pores of every song here. Abysse Mortifère is Outre-Tombe's most intense record to date, raging and undomesticated—it's one of the best death metal albums this year.
PUBLISHED OCTOBER 29 2021