Morbific, Squirm Beyond The Mortal Realm (Memento Mori 2022)

Death metal menacers Morbific return with their second long-player, Squirm Beyond The Mortal Realm.

I hear it is dark and cold in Finland, and if that is true then this is the right music for the place. Morbific started only two years ago and is peopled by Jusa Janhonen (bass, vocals), Onni Väkeväinen (drums), and Olli Väkeväinen (guitar). The title of their first album, Ominous Seep of Putridity, is a hint into the sound they produce, but don’t rely on that clue too much. The new record is sludgy and peculiar, layered as it is with both groove and dissonance in musical constructions that seem to delight in their confrontational architecture.

The ten-track set opens on the title song, and it is a lesson in avoiding expectations because there is no way accurately to anticipate what you are about to hear when you drop the needle. The music cracks through hook and groove then into blistering speed and on to peppered crunches with little regard to the disequilibrium that the lack of transition instills. It happens fast, and there is no road map. “Bind, Torture, Snuff” does this too, but you are getting a little balance now having survived the opener. The sour lead break is no surprise when it lands and still it is a delight. The vocals are indecipherable growls. Each and all parts are essential.

The album does require some endurance from its listeners, it’s true, but it rewards them with its originality and verve. Consider “Suicide Sanctum,” which is a low-running rambler and the longest track on the record. Much of it beats at a slower tempo and it is a searching kind of song. It is not an exploration as much as it is a demand for answers, and attitude which foments urgency. Given its extra heaviness, it is one of my favorites. And then there is “Initiation into Oblivion,” the shortest song, which is patient and eerie in the extreme. It is quiet, sweet poison in your ears, leaving completely vulnerable for the next track, “Meth Mansion Murders.” This album is a house of horrors in an unstable dimension. Recommended.

Squirm Beyond The Mortal Realm is out now in digital, and it is on vinyl through Me Saco Un Ojo Records, there is a CD from Memento Mori, plus a cassette version is provided by Headsplit Records. You can have it any way you want it.




Me Saco Un Ojo Records,

Headsplit Records,

Memento Mori,

© Wayne Edwards

Morbific, Squirm Beyond The Mortal Realm (Memento Mori 2022)