Published Jun 06, 2019Members of Unleashed, Necrophobic and former members of Entombed fill the ranks of Swedish supergroup Firespawn, who are releasing their third studio album, Abominate. As 2017's Reprobate built on the straightforward death metal stylings of their debut, so too does their latest release add to their sound by adding more groove and heaviness.
Despite hailing from the wintery north, their style has no traits of Swedish death metal, apart from the unmistakably Swedish harshness of L G Petrov's vocals. Instead, Firespawn have a sound more closely related to new millennium death metal acts like post-Barnes-era Cannibal Corpse, Gojira and Behemoth. This album in particular ramps up the gnarly Cannibal-style grooves, eschewing breakneck blast beats in favour of churning riffs, such as those on "The Gallows End" and "Heathen Blood."
There's a strong emphasis on riff craft here, but unfortunately songwriting as a whole has not been given as much attention. There are tasty riffs on this album, like in the sinister "The Great One," but tracks rarely feel like they're building to anything. It's more like a riff relay, just passing the torch until the song is done. It often leaves something to be desired as the final note fades away.
Abominate is a decent listen if you're looking for undiluted, run-of-the-mill death metal. However, it lacks the momentum and impact it needs to leave a lasting impression. (Century Media)