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Review: Mastication/Exhumed (Sweden)/Egypt - Wicked Material Sanity
Exhumed (Sweden)
Wicked Material Sanity

Label: Necroharmonic Productions
Year released: 2016
Duration: 53:01
Tracks: 12
Genre: Death Metal

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: February 25, 2017
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Readers Rating
Wicked Material Sanity

Rated 3.75/5 (75%) (4 Votes)

Ah, the renowned "Stockholm Death Metal sound". Sunlight Studio and the overall 90s Swedish underground Death Metal scene were some of those things that put Sweden on the Metal map big time. Stockholm in particular, was the main cradle for many Swedish Death Metal bands of those days – from Nihilist/Entombed to Dismember to Unleashed and so on... This list is actually pretty much endless. 

Many of these Swedish Death Metal troops hit it big and made a decent career for themselves back in the day and are still doing so. Behind all these big names were also a bunch of bands that either directly, or indirectly, got inspired by their "big brothers of death." Prime examples are such names as Mastication and Exhumed that both came from the Stockholm area when the hottest Death Metal boom was raging around Sweden and spread over to other countries as well like a rapid wildfire. Members of these two disbanded acts also have connections to other Swedish Death Metal forces such as Necrophobic, Grave, Dismember, etc., so they were all one big family, no doubt.

Necroharmonic Productions and Morbid Wrath Records are behind this co-release, which includes Mastication's two demos from 1990 and 1991, Exhumed's only three-song demo, plus an obscure outfit, Egypt (also featuring Janne Rudberg Björkenfjäll and David Brink), with their two-track demo from 1992. What connects these bands' releases is Sunlight Studio. Mastication's Death Metal came basically from the same murky cauldron where pre-Entombed act, Nihilist, slowly cooked their legendary, downright ultra-heavy, strongly buzz-saw guitar orientated Death Metal sound. Both of Mastication's demos have a killer production too, and I am sure one will find a lot of sheer pleasure in the band's ripping Death Metal delivery, especially if you have ever dug the music of Nihilist/Entombed, or Dismember, or Grave and the like. You should know what you get.

Exhumed can also be recognized somewhat easily by their "Stockholm Death Metal sound", even if they had incorporated some Thrash riffing into their songs on their only demo, titled Obscurity. They also used some synths on the background, adding a more haunting feel to the songs. The production isn't so crystal clear on their demo compared to Mastication's demos, but it still reflects those days very well. The starting riff in a song called "Satanic Verses" sounds very familiar to one other known Swedish Death Metal band, who seems to have ripped off straight from this particular song. You can try to listen to it and do all the research by yourself...

Egypt on the other hand, were a relatively different sounding entity from the hard-boiled troops of this "Stockholm Death Metal sound" pack, using some acoustic guitars, keyboards and even some clean singing within their sound. And not only that, they also sounded kind of progressive and more rocking in their own right. Good stuff nevertheless. The band's self-titled two-song demo was also pressed on a 7-inch vinyl by Doomentia Records, limited to 500 copies only.

The booklet contains info on all bands involved, decorated with a good amount of old photos and artworks related to those past days of all three bands. Here's your chance to grab a piece of a bit more obscure Swedish underground Death Metal history.

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