Erik Rundqvist – vocals, bass
Andreas Björnson – vocals, guitar
Anders Bertilsson – guitar
Tobias Gustafsson – drums
From Sweden comes this pulverizing disc of classic, old school-style death metal, delivered neatly to me in a biohazard container, amongst other poisoned, festering things, labeled FORENSIC NIGHTMARE, and shipped from the icy norths, by a band called CUT UP.
Reminiscent of the groove-death of OBITUARY and early ENTOMBED *(Also Godfathers of death metal, also hailing from Sweden), as well as the searing skill-slashes of *(again, from Sweden) DISSECTION and HYPOCRISY *(three guesses as to from where), CUT UP’s debut release slam-pits out classic death metal brutality in gore-sluiced spades. Make no mistake, however, for even though this may be CUT UP’s first release, none of the members here are amateurs, nor are they new to the scene. Band founders Erik Rundqvist and Tobias Gustafsson played for about twenty-four years together with VOMITORY *(another one of the early greats of the genre, in its fledgling days), from 1989 to their disbanding in 2013 *(releasing a total of eight albums, not including compilation appearances and various eps). Deciding they wanted to keep performing, Erik Rundqvist and Tobias Gustafsson exhumed a pair of performers with the same musical ideals such as they, and with the same unyielding passion to write, record, and perform live: Anders Bertilsson *(formerly of the Swedish deathgrind act COLDWORKER, 2006-2013) and Andreas Björnson *(of FETUS STENCH, ahem, fame) rounding it all out to become the brutalistic CUT UP.
While half-comprised of veterans from one of Europe’s long-term, original death metal acts, and this itself being of that very same genre, don’t go into this looking to hear VOMITORY. CUT UP have crafted their own finely twisted, brutal style that is no rehash or staid nostalgia, but instead shows an upward progression. There are some “blackened” elements here and there in the general style *(though not like the much overrated BEHEMOTH – – – more like DISSECTION in its particular blending of the black and death genres, when it’s there), and CUT UP use those stylings to good effect.
Lyrically we get everything great death metal tales of butchery (“A Butchery Improved”) are all about; topics such as murder cults (“Order Of The Chainsaw”), war atrocity (“Bunker Z 16”), killing (“Stab And Stab Again”), more killing (“Remember The Flesh”), being dead (“Burial Time”), the outright gore-soaked, mind-meltingly weird and nonsensical (“Camouflesh,” “Brain Cell Holocaust”), sketchy doctors (“Forensic Nightmare”), and of corpse, what kind of death metal album would it be without a song about Hell (“Enter Hell,” the album’s opener). There’s also necrophilia, or, well, really, a multitude of paraphilias they cover in the true vile tradition of the genre.
Hilariously over-the-top splatter horror topics and imagery aside, the music pummels these sickly sordid sonic scenes along with highly technically skilled tendrils, much like the massive hate tank that’s ultimately going to plow forth this mass destruction, carnage, and rising of mutants *(there’s 6 metal puns/homages in this sentence, by the way – – – if anyone can tell me what they are, you might win yourself a lil cd or something) with complete decimation. These guys can play. They’ve been playing, albeit in other projects, for some time, but they’ve not tired out nor worn down the material. FORENSIC NIGHTMARE blast-beats away unapologetically, eleven brutal songs in a mercifully short forty-one minutes, from “Enter Hell” through to the album’s closer *(as well as my favorite track), “Dead And Impaled,” *(ah yes, the aforementioned necrophilia) the song has several oddly placed (but not out of place) hooks and breakdowns, as well as an interesting kind of hardcore sensibility. It’s almost comes off as a blend of “The Bleeding”-era CANNIBAL CORPSE and GUT BUCKET, kind of like VOMIT FIST. There’s a definite experimentation in the nonstop blitz of sound the speakers are vomiting at you throughout the corpse of this particular song. “Dead And Impaled” stood out big time, especially being the album’s closer. One of death metal’s inherent flaws is that unless a band is really creative, really stands out, it can all start to sound the same. CUT UP avoid this almost entirely, and with that final song in particular, proves there’s more than guts on the floor and necrophilic, butchering mutants everywhere. Now they have weapons.
Death metal has never been my favorite of genres of metal, admittedly. I far prefer N.W.O.B.H.M., Black, Stoner/Doom, metalpunk, crossover, Industrial Metal, experimental – – – but there’s always been a small place in my crusted, bloodless heart that has had an appreciation for those who do it well, for whatever reason. Like anything else, if it catches me in some way it does, and if not, then it doesn’t. And this does. This is most certainly an album worth checking out for the death/grind aficionado, or even the standard extreme metal fan *(maybe you’ll hear this and pull your head out of your PANTER-ASS). This is the real deal. This is balls out, fukk you if you can’t take it old school-styled death metal appropriately brought into the modern age. Sick, twisted, technical, vicious, and short, like some limb-less midget-mutant trying to gnaw your genitals off, FORENSIC NIGHTMARE by CUT UP is indeed by all means worth it for both fans of the genre, and the newbies alike.
Drummer Tobias Gustafsson basically, and quite excitedly, simply sums it all up with this: “I proudly present to you, our debut album Forensic Nightmares! Less than a year and a half after we started CUT UP, our hard work and determination has paid off and resulted in this blasterpiece. We couldn’t be more satisfied with the album! Forensic Nightmares clearly makes a statement about what CUT UP is all about, and what our mission is for the future. So don’t sit back and enjoy this, but bang your fucking heads while blasting it at maximum volume! Then repeat! Cheers!”
Do what the man says. Pick this up – – – if a fan of the genre, this’ll be right up your alley – – – most likely with an horrific homemade medical device.
Find CUT UP on facebook:
To check out their video for “Burial Time”:
To check out their video for “A Butchery Improved”:
Vincent Daemon, writer, editor, musician, photgrapher, film/music buff and historian, and rabblerouser, can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/vincent.daemon.1 as well as his spontaneously updated blog of writing news and nonsense THE WRITINGS OF A DEPRAVED MIND http://vincentdaemon.blogspot.com/Some of his music can be painfully experienced at http://www.reverbnation.com/vincentdaemonsageofdesire3 His email is firstname.lastname@example.org