Cemetery Urn by Cemetery Urn

Release date: June 9, 2017
Label: Hells Headbangers Records

I own copies of Cemetery Urn’s prior full-length albums, and with the release of a new self-titled full-length recording, I’ve noticed that their simpler old-school death metal style has evolved into one that also utilizes brutal death metal elements. Without morphing into a brutal tech death machine, Cemetery Urn has now incorporated difficult licks and hyperblasts into its repertoire. The riffs never really climb the higher registers, almost sounding like they’re played from seven-string guitars. The drumming is more complex. The interplay between band members is tighter. The band is clearly more focused on this self-titled effort. It’s hard to find a band they sound similar to with some of the same changes they’ve added to their bag of tricks. But if I’d venture with a distant comparison, I’d say they sometimes remind me of modern-day Cannibal Corpse without the guitar squeals and stop and go Immolation-inspired riffs.

Cemetery Urn loves to groove. They shred and hyperblast with great regularity on their self-titled effort, so if you liked the Kataklysm-signature hyperblast snare drumming technique, Cemetery Urn will win you over. Their sound is much heavier, more brutal, and darker in atmosphere. Clearly, the cover art of this self-titled effort does their music justice. Deep in the catacombs in some distant derelict region, there must be the sound of water trickling, the smell of decay, mold, mildew, and the darkness of a sewage tank that never sees the light of day. In this nether region on earth are left bodies meant to be forgotten forever. This putrid scenario is perfect imagery for Cemetery Urn’s self-titled full-length. Cemetery Urn’s full-length self-titled effort is their best so far. It is their most ingenious, innovative musical output yet.

The band clearly want to top their previous musical output, not merely content to incorporate blast sections, they top it off by hyperblasting to exude brutality to excess. The riffs aren’t the simplest and catchiest. They require some intent listening, the way Cannibal Corpse started infusing more technical licks to their chug-heavy attack. It is done to a lesser degree of difficulty on Cemetery Urn’s effort however, never instilling the notion that they intend to go technical. They simply utilize licks with a greater degree of difficulty, then hyperblast and shred to the enjoyment of listeners who want old-school death metal with above average play and brutality. This is one of my favorite Hells Headbangers releases this year, and I almost failed to notice it in my library in spite of telling my editor at Echoes and Dust that I intend on checking it out.

And so I did, which resulted in great satisfaction. If you want osdm with atmosphere in the slow, staccato plucked rung notes and want crushing brutality in the heavy, brutal hyperblast sections, you get that and more with Cemetery Urn’s self-titled death metal salvo. It is death metal with the intent to destroy pre-conceived notions reserved for lesser osdm efforts. With production that suitably brings all the instruments a clarity that is often lost in most Hells Headbangers releases, this album might endear itself to fans who simply decide to check this out and put much-more-hyped albums aside. For the underground, and by the underground, Cemetery Urn succeeds where bands with much-lauded hype cannot. They craft quality death metal with an intent to lay waste to all modern death metal in their midst. This is available in analog, and that means only one thing – forget hype and enjoy good music. Enjoy Cemetery Urn’s new self-titled album, care of Hells Headbangers Records.

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