|Review: Necromancer - Rehearsal 1987|
Year released: 1987
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: May 24, 2021
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
Rated 4.29/5 (85.71%) (7 Votes)
While it doesn't seem to be well remembered, Finland had a very active Thrash scene in the mid '80s that appears to have been quickly swept away after the Death Metal movement started getting traction. Part of this obscurity seems to come from the fact that many of the bigger names from the scene never got past the demo phase and remained local acts until they just faded away. Necromancer are among the more fondly remembered acts of this era despite only existing for about three years, and after giving their rehearsal tape a listen, I can understand why.
The biggest thing to note is that the title isn't lying when it claims this is a rehearsal rather than a proper release. The production definitely sounds like it was jammed out in a single sitting, with individual tracks starting with feedback noises as the band prepares to play, sound cutting out in different audio channels, a drum sound that lacks any impact or depth, and practically everything except the guitars being near inaudible throughout. Outside of the obvious reasons, I'm willing to forgive all that due to how very good the guitar work is on here, with plenty of energy and attitude to the riffs that goes along with some surprisingly good lead work. The vocals are the biggest drawback, as they're a punkish sort of grunt that doesn't have much power behind it, but they're far enough in the background to mostly ignore them, and they can't stop the relentless assaults of tracks like "Enforced to Kill" and "Untitled" (whether that's a cheeky song title or if it really is an untitled performance is anyone's guess).
Necromancer would squeeze out another demo and an EP that may as well have been a demo before folding in the early '90s, right when the tide of Death Metal really started to rise. It's kind of a shame that the scene ended so quickly, with plenty of quality bands never getting a chance to stand out on the global stage in the same way bands like Demigod and Convulse did, but I suppose there's no helping that. Plenty of these acts have gotten their just dues thanks to compilations over the years, Necromancer included, so you're honestly better off giving those a look, especially since this tape is actually impossible to find. If you want a brief taste of what could have been before that, however, this is worth looking up online.
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