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The beauty to last weeks’ beast, the Ghost Cult album round-up is back for your vulgar delectation, and our final compilation of 2017 captures albums most Metal and most Melodic, shining a light on last-minute stocking fillers that St. Anne, rather than St Nick, would approve of… Continue reading

Avulsed – Carnivoracity (20th Anniversary Reissue)

avulsed

The fact that Spanish Death Metal was never really a “thing” is despite the hard work and commitment of Mr. Dave Rotten. As a promoter, label boss and vocalist, he was the tireless mentor and visible face of Spain’s nascent 90’s Death Metal scene, and still regarded as a hero to many of the musicians and fans who grew up in that scene. With this enhanced reissue of his own band’s first serious release, Rotten’s own Xtreem Music label aims to celebrate not only his music but the scene he passionately tried to build.

Despite Rotten’s obvious passion and commitment, however, the music on this new edition of Carnivoracity (Xtreem Music) suggests a reason why his beloved scene never really grew beyond its inspirations. Consisting of the initial three track EP (two originals and a Pentagram cover) and a further nine live tracks, there is nothing particularly wrong with Carnivoracity. This is solid, competent Death Metal very much in the 90’s American style, and the live tracks sound surprisingly sharp and heavy. The band’s enthusiasm and passion for what they’re doing shines through constantly – Rotten’s between-song banter in particular reveals a man whose clearly doing exactly what he dreams of, even if you can’t speak Spanish.

The problem, such that it is, is simply that there’s nothing special here. There were a lot better bands doing the same thing in ’94, and there have been a great many since. You can hear Avulsed’s inspirations clearly, but on this record they have no identity of their own.

This is one of those releases that it’s hard to recommend, not because it’s bad but because it’s not clear who’d benefit from buying it – fans of Cannibal Corpse, Monstrosity or early Malevolent Creation will enjoy it, but will already own a shelf full of albums that are better, and those who prefer something quirkier or more abstract in their Death Metal won’t find very much here. Hardcore Avulsed fans or Spanish Death Metal completists may want it for the live tracks, but even within Death Metal, they must be fairly niche groups.

5/10

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RICHIE H-R