Nihilist (1987 - 1989)
I really have no idea why the official re-release of these classic recordings took so incredibly long… I mean, considering the fact that without NIHILIST there probably would be no Swedish Death Metal sound (as we all know it) AT ALL, it’s really a shame that a shitload of less important tapes were re-issued properly long before this already! Ok, there’s been a couple of CD bootlegs of this stuff, but none of them ever managed to fully do justice to the material, simply because they all lacked in the original recording quality. So, in that respect this official release is the ultimate choice after all. You will never ever get any other chance to hear the stuff in this raw intensity, unless you’re among the lucky ones to own the original tapes from back then (and even those tapes probably won’t manage to compete with the dynamics of this CD version). What we are offered here is the entire NIHILIST demo history in chronological order, as well as the one and only ENTOMBED demo “But Life Goes On”. On the band’s 1988’s debut tape “Premature Autopsy” NIHILIST were all still very young at age (15 in average), with a couple of line-up difficulties still to be solved and therefore pretty much struggeling to find a sound on their own. No surprise that the three songs aren’t in their soon-to-become typical style yet. Instead you can hear elements of their early influences (REPULSION and MASTER in particular) shining through pretty good, which they successfully incorporated into their own identy on the follow-up demo “Only Shreds Remain” already. This tape turned out so much stronger and way more deathly sounding, that it should easily be considered as their first real classic! All this might have been the result of a full five-piece line-up after all (Johnny Hedlund had joined them on bass, giving “Leffe” the opportunity to take over the second guitar, while L.G. Petrov became their fulltime vocalist) and their choice of studio and producer (the at the time completely unknown Tomas Skogsberg at Sunlight Studio)! The rest is pretty much history… In 1989, “Drowned”, the band’s third demo saw the light of day, presenting us what was to become the blueprint for almost every new Death Metal band to come out of Sweden at the time! NIHILIST had established their own brutal style and typical guitar sound, which simply got copied to death many many years! Shortly after the release of “Drowned” Johnny left the band to form UNLEASHED and Nicke and the gang re-named the whole project to ENTOMBED, releasing the already mentioned “But Life Goes On” demo, which lead to their deal with Earache Records and their excellent debut full length “Left Hand Path”. What we also have on this CD is three additional tracks from the “Drowned” sessions, which partly got released with the “Drowned” demo back then (depending on which version you got). One of them is a cover of the old REPULSION classic ‘Radiation Sickness’, which also ended up becoming the title for a bootleg 7″ that featured exactly these recordings. How important all of these early demo tunes were to the band itself and the scene in general is pretty good reflected in the fact that ENTOMBED re-recorded almost all of them on “Left Hand Path”, while ‘Severe Burns’ ended up on “Clandestine” and ‘Shreds Of Flesh’ on the “Stranger Aeons” EP. So, this demo collection (which comes with an in-depth history and a bunch of vintage pictures) is unquestionable a piece of Death Metal history and therefore should be owned by everyone into this style of music! For more info check out the label’s website at: www.threeman.net.