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Review: Laethora - March of the Parasite
March of the Parasite

Label: The End Records
Year released: 2007
Duration: 38:42
Tracks: 11
Genre: Death Metal

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: May 13, 2007
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Readers Rating
March of the Parasite

Rated 5/5 (100%) (1 Vote)

When reading that this was the new side project of Dark Tranquillity guitarist Niklas Sundin, I was expecting a derivative melodeath album replete with soaring synths and occasional clean vocals, similar to that of his main project. But when realizing that three of the other members of the band is made up from members of Gothenburg gothsters The Provenance (with vocalist/bass player Jonatan Nordenstam being the only member not to feature in other bands), I can't honestly say I was looking forward to listening to this CD at all. How wrong could I be…?

Laethoria play a sparkling brand of death metal, which at times borders a sound more akin to a more melody driven Suffocation, with intensive brutality, guttural vocals and blasting Immolation styled dissonance interjecting throughout the morose atmospheres which permeate the entire album, taking the edge off of my US death metal comparisons with a darker, Scandinavian tinge. This is about as far from the At the Gates as you can get when it comes to Swedish death metal, even having a slightly punky, grinding edge at times (The track 'Repulsive', in particular could've been taken from a Insision album if it wasn't for the heightened sense of melody, and greater variety of riffwork). The album sits comfortably in the middle ground between the old and new school of death metal, similarly to fellow Swedes Bloodbath, albeit with better songwriting ability and a greater knowledge of dynamics, allowing the rise and fall of riff passages to truly have maximum impact.

So, never judge a book by its cover is the age old adage learned from today's review, as this is a killer album which repays multiple listens tenfold. Whether you're an inquisitive Dark Tranquillity fan, or just a jaded death metal fan who's skeptical of whether this is actually any good or not, take it from me - you really can't go wrong with this album.

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