Thoroughly enjoyable death metal

In an era where our favourite artists can no longer earn money from one project, a ton of super groups are being spawned and The Lurking Fear is another in a long list of such bands, built from members of At The Gates, Tormented and Skitsystem.

Apparently striving for a traditional death metal album with modern production qualities, have they ever achieved their goal. Opening with a now traditional cinematic instrumental to set the scene of horror to come, the album blasts into life on ‘Vortex Spawn’ as drummer Adrian Erlandsson whips up a frenzy of blast beats and speed that is akin to a D-beat hardcore sound, before driving the track to a climatic flurry of noise.

Sounding as much like early Swe-death as you would expect with its participants, bands like pre-Entombed thrashers Nihilist being the biggest marker, the album blazes through great tracks like ‘The Infernal Dread’ ‘Upon Black Winds’ and the slightly more modern sounding ‘The Cold Jaws Of Death’ minus the melodic sensibilities and orchestration common with some death bands now. Where The Lurking Fear really shines is at the end of this album, leaving you waiting for more, or like me, going through a back catalogue of early Nihilist/Entombed and Death albums for further gruesome fun. ‘Tentacles of Blackened Horror’ has that certain something that makes a great track a classic, driving constantly forward with a darkness built up to throughout and ‘Beneath Menacing Sands’ sees the band take the darkness before it and slow it down a little bit to create an evil and unsettling feeling to finish the album out on.

It has to be stated that this band has in no way attempted to do something other than recreate a form of music that they clearly enjoy listening to and playing. And so long as the listener has this clearly in their mind it is very enjoyable. Coming in expecting At The Gates Mk II or something new and fresh will leave you disappointed as that is not the aim of this project. This is thoroughly enjoyable death metal and if the band don’t get around to making another album together, this is a good high water mark on its own.

1. Out of the Voiceless Grave
2. Vortex Spawn
3. The Starving Gods of Old
4. The Infernal Dread
5. With Death Engraved in Their Bones
6. Upon Black Winds
7. Teeth of the Dark Plains
8. The Cold Jaws of Death
9. Tongued With Foul Flames
10. Winged Death
11. Tentacles of Blackened Horror
12. Beneath Menacing Sands