Demonization by Lock UpRelease date: March 10, 2017
Label: Listenable Records
Following the amicable departure of longtime Lock Up vocalist Tomas Lindberg three years ago there was much sadness as the At The Gates man left the grind supergroup he formed with UK metal luminaries, bassist Shane Embury, drummer Nicholas Barker and the late guitarist Jesse Pintado back in the late 1990s. But that sadness transformed into grind fiends rejoicing at the news that his replacement was grind legend Kevin Sharp with the former Brutal Truth man the perfect fit to join the band.
Sharp makes his debut with Lock Up on Demonization, the band’s first album in six years and am happy to report that he fits perfectly into the band with as fearsome a performance on here as anything in his time with Brutal Truth, it’s that savage.
Wasting absolutely no time in reintroducing the world to that primal Lock Up sound, the band erupt with ‘Blood And Emptiness’ and with that, a grindcore maelstrom emerges taking in the frenzied likes of ‘Locust’, ‘The Plague That Stalks The Darkness’ and ‘Foul From The Pure’ amongst its many highlights and only by the time this focussed opus ends abruptly with ‘Shut The Light’, do you have time to catch your breath.
The bands ferocity throughout this album is spot on, especially on the immense triple salvo of ‘Mind Fight’, ‘Void’ and ‘Secret Parallel World’ with Sharp, Embury, Barker and guitarist Anton Reisenegger blasting out the finest in punishing grindcore, that is expertly produced and sounds especially razor sharp.
The talent on show is unsurpassable in the realms of grindcore, thrash and death metal with Sharp, Embury, Barker and Resisenegger all at the top of their games and firing on all cylinders with their roars, low end rumbles, razor sharp riffs and blastbeats. The chemistry between them all is infectious, this is the sound of Lock Up reborn and set to destroy all that comes in their way.
Lock Up are due to hit the road soon in support of the album with both Napalm Death and Brujeria (a Shane Embury fans dream bill!) and on the strength of the songs on Demonization you are advised to get there from the start as this set of material will be phenomenal live. Like a fine wine, these grindcore icons just get better as the years go on and still sound as fresh in 2017 (the inclusion of Sharp as vocalist ably considered of course) as they did when they first emerged in 1999. Any grind band will have their work cut out in attempting to create an album as good as Demonization.