Nucleus – Entity (Unspeakable Axe)

Friday, 14th June 2019
Rating: 8/10

Skrony, cavernous death metal is an area that now seems to have arguably peaked back a year or two ago in terms of seeing just wave upon wave of the stuff. The weird, off-kilter sound that merged everything from Gorguts to Demilich to Incantation and put it through a murky filter. So now we are mostly left with the ones that were doing it right and dare to continue forward. Nucleus continues to wade further into the genre, and Entity is enjoyable for its ability to do the genre right, but also stay more accessible than many.

Accessibility isn’t a bad thing in this regard. Think more along the lines of a band like Horrendous, which takes the old school template and makes it their own (and adds some copious melodies). Entity has the sound and vibes of the skronkiest of death metal acts, but they never overdue the murkiness. Instead they trade a bit of the ‘muddy’ portion for some more progressive riffing and melodies. The dark, dreary sense of Finnish death metal has its stamp as well, making for a fine merger with the cacophonous rumbling. All in all, it makes for a strong set-up – they can blast away and really dive into some crazy riffing (“Outpost”) but then go ahead and crank up the weird and atmospheric on the very next track (“Dominion”) without the listener batting an eye. Some bits of groove help to make the tracks more varied and more hooks to engage with.

In some ways, Entity is a great starting point for those who have somehow missed out on some of the murkier death metal releases in the last few years. It provides that same sense of cavern-dwelling weirdness (and killer sci-fi content), but still keeps it varied enough that some who may be more hesitant to dive further into it may enjoy it as well. A real win-win situation in all aspects.

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