Company: Unruly Sounds Release: 2007 Genre: Death Reviewer: Raising Iron
First and foremost is malignant brutality
Well, it's simply inevitable for today's bands and their members; there are just too many damn likeable genres and/or sub-genres for a successful musician to continue with his/her contrivances in a single milieu, hence another "side-project". This time its guitarist Niklas Sundin, yea, you guessed it, none other than the dour, six-string stinger from one of the best Gothenburg melodic death metal outfits, Dark Tranquillity. Securing help from fellow (gothic) Swedes--The Provenance (now defunct), Niklas sets out to unleash lethal drillings into the brain's cortex, twisting it inside it out and lashing it to the floor with six Dean Markley's.
Laethora is death metal, albeit scored within its cousin's grind metal gambol, yet traces of melodic psychedelia reverberate underneath the feet. First and foremost is malignant brutality though, something Niklas' mainstay generally ignores, and one has to assume that this is the vehicle Mr. Sundin has chosen with which to take out his hatred toward the living. This debut is from 2007, the only recording to Laethora's name thus far, and its called March of the Parasite. The stark red, white, and black cover artwork is immediately reminiscent of Pink Floyd's allegorical "vagina" flittering along the wall, but it belies the nascent decennial tracks within. The disc is quick at thirty-eight minutes, but it hits as hard as nails. I wish I could tell you more about the singer Jonatan Nordenstam, as I could find no former band relations listed, but his twice-ground vocals are surprisingly perceptible (think Carcass circa Necroticism), and a boon to the grist.
There's nothing really all that original here, but the separated mix combined with the inserted moments of brash melodicism work to the guys' strengths, allowing a quick dose of grind to sear the senses. The album ends with a plodding, death/doom variation, sprinkled with a bit of a delirious, frenetic impulse, just to keep the listener on a ware.
Laethora's March of the Parasite is definitely worth a few spins, just don't expect to be blown away; take it for what it is: a perfunctory excursion into the extreme end of death metal, via one Mr. Niklas Sundin and his consternate kaleidoscope.
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