Sadistic Grimness – Asteni CD

Grade: 7/10
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Sadistic Grimness – Asteni CD
Genre: Death/black metal
Origin: Sweden
Released: 2009
Website: Sadistic Grimness 
Label: Daemon Worship Productions 
Uploaded: 08.01.10

I’d never heard of Sadistic Grimness before, at least not to my current recollection, and actually assumed this was the band’s debut album. Upon looking them up I realized this was their second album, and that the members certainly weren’t any spring chickens in the ways of metal. But nonetheless this is my first experience with the lads.
While I guess I’d chalk this up to another band in the new wave of Swedish old school death metal (if there wasn’t already such a label I’m instating it now) there’s a lot more to these compositions than just death metal. A huge load of black metal can be overheard in both riffing and vocal departments, just as some thrashing groove is being widely thrown about at times. The production is fairly crude, albeit in a good way since it retains a somewhat classic edge to it. Everything’s fully audible; from every drum beat to riffs from both guitar and bass. The audible bass adds a very heavy rumbling effect to the tunes, which I definitely appreciate.
The vocals carry a raspy blackish vibe that reminds me some of Sacramentum, coincidently I also do get some vibes of said band for the music as well. The particular vocal style makes the band stand out from the crowd, but unfortunately they have a tendency to use some clean spoken sections, and that just cheapens the whole idea and almost ruins great tracks, one in particular being Pulsating darkness. I love the melodic razorsharp riffing, the fast tempo, the wicked breaks and then they piss all over it with the spoken shite. But there’s thankfully no pissing on the rest of the musicianship, and the guitar lines are most of the time very effective, the bass work is killer and the drumming leaves nothing more to wish for. The alternation between blasting and slowly chugging tempo, and not following the same recipe throughout every track, makes the album unpredictable.
A clear favourite song here is the title track, and I think much of it has to do with the fact that it’s the only track with Swedish lyrics. I love lyrics in bands native tongue, and here it adds an ominous chill to the song, which was already eerily creeping forward. Other than that the faster ones like Rotting in solitude and Flames of desolation really speaks to me with its unrelenting brutal approach. To tell you the truth I can’t say I’m all that thrilled about the first half of the album; it’s good but nothing exciting. It’s not until Pulsating darkness sets in that I really get into it and start to dig along for real. It’s a good album, but a bit of uneven in my book.

01. Introduction
02. Incongruity
03. The birth
04. Lieath
05. Razormania
06. Pulsating darkness
07. Asteni
08. Lower the casket
09. Rotting in solitude
10. Flames of desolation
11. Spiritual serenity