Album: Til Death
Label: Helter Skelter Productions / Regain Records
Release Date: January 13th, 2023
Release Date CD and LP: February 10th, 2023
Location: Landskrona, Sweden
Swedish solo death metal act Funereality present us with a solid offering of filthy old school death metal in the vein of Autopsy. Prepare for bluesy, doom-laden death metal with gurgled vocals and raw, biting production.
The project’s sole member Gusten Joachim Andlo proves without a doubt that he is a force to be reckoned with in the underground scene. Not only is he a god tier vocalist but his song writing ability and instrumental proficiency are worthy of the highest levels of praise. The man is a one-man extreme metal machine as he hits us with ten tracks of flawless old school filth and muck, each as grotesque and crushing as the last.
The album leans heavily into its doom elements as it crawls along at a menacingly slow pace for the most part, dragging out each note to hang in the air and put ever-growing weight upon the listener. The less doom focused riffs on the album are stupidly heavy and carry plenty of aggression, but have a bluesy undertone that also gives them a kind of swagger. Look no further than PiGS to see a prime example of this that will have you banging your head for days. I also appreciate Gusten’s choice to keep the tracks on the shorter side with almost all coming in between 2 and 4 minutes in length. This makes sure that each one is punchy and on point from start to finish, never feeling dull or draw out.
The drum work on the release actually moves at a mid to high-tempo pace, which sits in contrast with the guitar work and bass, which in itself causes a certain level of anxiety and dread. Where would all of this be without bass guitar, which on this album happens to be HEAVY and just as dirty as the guitar, as it rattles and rumbles through the very fiber of music itself.
Piercing through this thick wall of muck and distortion comes Gusten’s unstoppable vocal assault, which many will draw parallels with to Autopsy’s Chris Reifert. There’s that deranged/unhinged serial killer type energy behind every utterance but at the same time it also feels like it could be coming out of the mouth of a monster that emerges after a person falls into a toxic waste dump and is initially presumed dead but rises again days later.
Lastly, while the album has obvious horror themes and song titles such as Drink Your Blood Eat Your Skin, I must commend Gusten for bringing a horror sound and essence to the very music itself through brooding atmosphere, horrific vocals and tension building riffs. All of this just makes the listening experience that much more immersive and captivating and exemplifies exactly what this school of death metal is all about.
Overall, I think this is an amazing offering of modern OSDM and that any fans of Autopsy will find PLENTY to love here. If you enjoy your death metal deranged and dirty, then this is the album for you.
Listen to and order the album: