Grave - Burial Ground
Regain Records
Death Metal
9 songs (42'06")
Release year: 2010
Grave, Regain Records
Reviewed by Alex

It has been only a couple of years since I opined how Swedish deathmeisters Grave have picked themselves up off the mat with Dominion VIII. Resiliency – something all of us need in life, and Grave seems to have it in them. There is one Russian saying that “only a grave can straighten a hunchbacked man” akin to “tiger never being able to change his stripes”. Both apply to Grave. The first one literally so.

On Burial Ground the band does not deviate much from the brutal old school Swedish death metal they presented on Dominion VIII. Thick, bashing guitars with strings seemingly finger-thick and full of reverb constantly stir the dirty downtuned muck, piling the viciousness on. The drums, still occupied by Ronnie Bergerstahl, are rather understated, providing pulse-like blast on Semblance in Black where speedy blackened tremolo meets the grime of death metal, until everything crashes to the breakneck stop. It is actually this newfound songwriting prowess of Grave which I took away the most from Burial Ground.

Sure it is all death metal and never-ending misanthropy. Yet, keenly and deftly, the band alternates parts and tempos in just about every song to never slip into a pointless rut. Stricter riffs of Liberation and, especially, Dismembered Mind first present the growling menacing stare, so fitting with Ola Lindgren’s grunts, before beginning thunderously battering away. Predatory prowls, faster headbanging parts or nutty solos (Conqueror, Sexual Mutilation) slow down into gripping demonic hell-on-earth declaration with heaviness stepped up to a higher level. Stomping one moment (Conqueror) and providing soundcheck to a graveyard orchestra just prior, one never knows when animal crawl is going to break into a gallop (Ridden with Belief) on this album.

The closing final title track says it all. Even if you did not know its name, distorted tubed out guitars, crushing bells and overall pervasive cemetery atmosphere place a listener firmly at the site of the nearest necropolis.

Some will call these guys boring, where others will see consistency. Never progressing to the position of my favorite old school Swedish death metal band, Grave was always able to secure a ton of respect points. These guys could care less in what direction the latest trend blows, yet within their own style they continue to plow through with the stubbornness of a maniac. Burial Ground does little to change this perception.

Killing Songs :
Dismembered Mind, Conquerer, Burial Ground
Alex quoted 74 / 100
Other albums by Grave that we have reviewed:
Grave - Dominion VIII reviewed by Alex and quoted 78 / 100
Grave - Fiendish Regression reviewed by Jack and quoted 85 / 100
Grave - Back From The Grave reviewed by Jack and quoted 95 / 100
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