Monday, June 10, 2013
Entombed: From the Best to the Worst
1) Left Hand Path (1990)
2) Hollowman (1993)
I'll admit, the first (and title) track had me really doubting things. To this day I'm not a big fan of it (although the middle section ranks among the band's best riffs), but once 'Serpent Speech' comes rollin' 'round the bend the band are on fucking fire and no ocean on Earth can put out the flames until the final note of the brilliant rendition of the Hellraiser theme rings out. Speaking of which, I always viewed that track as being a sequel of sorts to Left Hand Path's staggeringly awesome take on the Phantasm theme.
3) Wolverine Blues (1993)
Again, the weakest track here is 'Hollowman', which, after having been featured as the title track of the band's previous release, comes across as being completely redundant this time around. Aside from that, though, this album fucking slays and is by far my favorite full length by Entombed after 'Left Hand Path'. Sure, you can forget about the gloomy, doom-drenched atmosphere of the first two albums, but I'm really quite fine with that. Entombed are such great songwriters that everything done here is quite masterfully executed and besides, the sheer weight and distinction of the band's sound is the same as it ever was. If anything, I think the catchier, more "rock" oriented approach makes the band's attack all the more devastating.
4) To Ride, Shoot Straight and Speak the Truth (1997)
The songs are a little more varied this time around, in terms of tempo fluctuations and the like, but believe me, this album is every bit as infectious and potent as 'WB'. Obviously, 'TRSSASTT' (damn, that's a long ass acronym!) finds Entombed burrowing further down the rock & roll rabbit hole, but that's fine by me as I've always been a fan of Sabbath, Zep and Purple equally as much as Carcass, Napalm Death and Obituary.
5) Clandestine (1991)
6) Inferno (2003)
7) Same Difference (1998)
I totally understand why people would hate this album and avoid it at all costs. I'm not here to convince anyone otherwise, but I will say that after having given it an honest chance, I ended up really liking it. A lot.
Obviously this is not a death metal record, nor does it really fall into the "death -n- roll" category as , again, the "death" aspect is really quite alive... and kicking. If anything, this is more of a bluesy, ultra-moody alt-rock album which showcases Entombed's almost uncanny songwriting ability, proving that no matter what style of music they venture off towards, you can expect the results to kick ass. Again, anyone who holds a more "militant" stance in regards to death metal and such, will probably not like this and in all probability hate this. However, if you have an open mind and have warmed up to the band's less aggressive tendencies in the past, then I really don't see why you wouldn't enjoy this. Sure, it may be a hell of a lot less "intense" as the band's previous output, but 'Same Difference' unquestionably falls into the 'heavy rock' category with zero ballads and nary a techno beat to be heard.
8) Uprising (2000)
9) Morningstar (2001)
10) Serpent Saints (2007)
Again, this is not a horrible album by any means (at this point, I think it's safe to say that Entombed is almost incapable of delivering a solid piece of shit), but it's far from being any sort of return to form, whether it be 'Left Hand Path' territory or even 'Wolverine Blues' ('Inferno' was about as close to that as the band has gotten), and despite the band's impressive track record in terms of songwriting capabilities, 'Serpent Saints' is probably their most yawn inducing. It really doesn't surprise that they haven't released an album since as it's quite evident here that they had run out of ideas.
11) When in Sodom (2006)
12) Crawl (1991)