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Demonic Plague - Tribute To Death
(Dwell Records)

Tribute-albums overkill! I personally wouldn't say that "bigger" names necessarily need to appear on a tribute album to make it appealing to the customer but at least the quality of the versions should be included! Some tributes these days just smell like cheap cash-in and this would also be the case with "Demonic Plague - A Tribute To Death" released by Dwell Records. Bad things start with the terrible and totally out-of-the-place cover art and rather poor booklet. The versions themselves don't really make your / my day either, being a fan of Chuck Schuldiner and his boys: SOLUS from Canada execute 'Defensive Personalities' the simple and straight way, missing on all those small technical elements but highlighting the song with a blast-beat on the guitar-leads passage. EXMORTIS is quite a long-active name in the underground but 'Baptized In Blood' is just untight, raw old-school Thrash-Black metal with a boring drum-machine and overall rather demo sounding quality. My buddies TORTHARRY from Czechia do a solid version of the evergreen 'Pull The Plug' and only fail a bit due to the GOREFEST type of vocal gruaaaants. MALAMOR's 'Suicide Machine' attempt is just bad and once again shows that DEATH is a band musically so much ahead of most of the Death Metal scene. WASTELAND from Germany do 'Evil Dead' in OK Thrash Metal style with a funny acoustic introduction in the vein of GYPSY KINGS. TERMINAL PLAN is just brutal demo-Death on 'See Through Dreams' and have a disappointing sound quality. BLACK SPIRAL from the US only deserve credit for replacing the guitar leads by piano-parts on 'Within The Mind' but otherwise just suck while pretending to play the song. PESSIMIST seem to be on a rush with '1000 Eyes' and aren't exactly keeping the original flow of this great track, too bad! NEUROSILENCE from Norway play a solid, basic version of 'Trapped In A Corner'. Nothing exciting but at least no huge insult here. FURY from Australia should be one of the highlights on this album and their version of 'Sacred Serenity' is pretty alright and driving. WAVES from Czechia close down the compilation with a pretty different approach, as they perform 'Crystal Mountain' in an almost ambient-like way, nice atmosphere and plenty of effects / samples with some individual accent that stands out in comparison to the other versions on the record. All in all a pretty lame tribute record, especially because DEATH is a band that has so many great songs deserving praise by talented bands. I really look forward to seeing the day where some label gets working on some quality release to show respect to the masters of Death Metal. As for "Demonic Plague" - please avoid!

Leif Jensen

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