Published Mar 03, 2014"Morbus crohn" is the German term for the inflammatory bowel disease that we know as Crohn's disease; Morbus Chron are a Swedish death metal band whose sophomore release is such a departure from their debut, Sleepers In The Rift, that it might turn bowels inside out in shock. Where their last offering was defined by the filth-encrusted and the abject, with tracks like "Dead Body Pile Necrophile," on Sweven, their interest has shifted from body horror to existential terror. The album title itself is a Middle English word meaning a dream or vision; tracks like "It Stretches In The Hollow" and "Beyond Life's Sealed Abode" are more concerned with ephemeral reality and the creeping certainty of mortality than reveling in the putrid details of evisceration and decay.
This maturity, or deepening, is not only present in the subject matter that Morbus Chron tackle with Sweven, but is also captured in their technique. A wonderfully complex, slightly progressive tendency has taken root in the rich ground of their foundation in traditional death metal, and the results are fruitful. There is a sense of space, of exploration and air, that defies the sometimes smothering atmosphere of death metal, while the band's aggressive instincts and ability to go for blood remain wholly intact. Sweven is an excellent example of the possibilities still inherent in the death metal genre, the ways in which the core aesthetic may be honoured while simultaneously allowing for the exploration of new musical territory.
Read an interview with Morbus Chron here. (Century Media)