(Metal Age Productions)
Desecration have never been a band that have held back on their art, or compromised on their content. Their debut album, 'Gore And Perversion', was banned on release for the explicit art work and lyrics and now, just over twenty years later, they are back with studio release number eight and happily the explicit lyrics and artwork continue.
They have also continued in the same vein as their previous album, 'Forensix', maintaining that solid old school death Metal sound, with a generous application of catchy riffs, frantic yet natural sounding drum work, and brutal vocals that have a great range, from deep growls and grunts to higher tortured and sometimes bloodcurdling screams.
It's brutal yet catchy as well as slightly raw and unpolished and the overall result is superb.
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There is no one theme to the lyrics but as the title suggests quite a few tracks are set in the graveyard, as for the remainder, the levels of gore and perversion enjoyed on their previous releases is maintained here on 'Cemetery Sickness'. Hardly surprising given that vocalist/guitarist's Ollie Jones's day job is a mortician.
All the tracks, lengthwise are pretty compact with nothing going past the three and a half minute mark, totalling a concise thirty-one minutes but the album is such an intense, engaging listen it seems longer.
I love the album in its entirety; they have kept everything simple and straightforward but it is sufficiently varied to maintain your interest. There are some stand out moments across the album, that begins with the opening rack, the superb 'Cemetery Sickness', a varied track, tempo and direction wise with a dirty sleazy underlying groove to the riffs making it a track that sticks in your mind.
The mix of great riffs and a chorus that is hissed with evil intent makes 'Coffin Smasher' another superb track but probably my favourite track is, 'I, Cadaver'. It is hilariously sick, beginning with footsteps then an intense extended guitar opener overlaid with the spoken lyrics, humorously applied, detailing the thoughts of someone experiencing their own autopsy. Musically it's an intense chunk of seriously superb riffs and horrifyingly well delivered, brutal lyrics.
Opening to the sound of a cracking skull is 'Rotten Brain Extraction'; the deranged higher vocals add a lot to this short sharp gem of a track. Lyrically the track 'Cunt Full Of Maggots' makes me squirm but the guitar work is so catchy and the torture is extended here on this, the longest track.
A superbly graphic sound-bite opens 'Cabletie Castrator' but what makes this track so good is the broad range of vocals with some blood curdling psychopathic high screams in the latter part of the track. 'Mortuary Debauchery' has a superbly dense and catchy quality to the riffs and the final track 'Grave Secrets' just has a superb intensity to it.
'Cemetery Sickness' was recorded at Sonic Forge Studio, Cardiff, Wales and was produced by Joe Thompson and the artwork for 'Cemetery Sickness' was undertaken by Jumali Katani (Scent Of Death, Thy Art Is Murder) It is a superbly sick and solid offering by these Welsh legends.
All three members of Desecration also play in punk grinders Extreme Noise Terror and Mic has recently joined UK thrashers Onslaught, so they certainly don't sit around on their decaying laurels.