Thursday, 28 July 2011
Adversary - forgotten death metal jewel from Sweden
ADVERSARY members played in few well known Swedish bands later on:
Hendrik "Henka" Ohlsson was most productive as he recorded several albums: 1994 - LEGIA - Legia (album), 1996 - THEORY IN PRACTICE - Submissive (demo), 1996 - HAGEN CROWS - Hagen Crows (demo), 1997 - THEORY IN PRACTICE - Third Eye Function (album), 1998 - THEORY IN PRACTICE - The Armageddon Theories (album), 1998 - MUTANT - Eden Burnt To Ashes (demo), 1999 - MUTANT - The Aeonic Majesty (album), 2001 - THEORY IN PRACTICE - Colonizing The Sun (album), 2002 - PORRKESTERN - 100 Ggr. Bättre Live (album), 2003 - PORRKESTERN - Bara Sa Där Ända (demo), 2003 - ALTERED AEON - Light Creates Shadows (demo), 2004 - ALTERED AEON - Dispiritism (album), 2004 - SCAR SYMMETRY - Seeds Of Rebellion (demo), 2005 - SCAR SYMMETRY - Symmetric In Design (album), 2006 - SCAR SYMMETRY - Pitch Black Progress (album), 2007 - ALTERED AEON - Reborn As Gods (demo).
SCAR SYMMETRY is the most successful of all these bands. Per Nilsson also played in this band, as well as in ALTERED AEON, CATACOMB, THRAWN, WORLD BELOW.
David Larsson formed brilliant cult act called IN AETERNUM and till the present day records great death metal records. Henka Ohlsson also played in SCAR SYMMETRY, THEORY IN PRACTICE, MUTANT, DIABOLICAL, ALTERED AEON and THRAWN.
The fact that three ADVERSARY members played together in few other bands through the years only confirms how weird is that they couldn’t decide at the time whether to carry on with ADVERSARY or not. Shame!
Remains of an Art Forgotten (demo 1991)
Recorded: Recorded in Sunlight Studio December 07-08 of 1991
Recording line up: Jorgen Palmeby – Vocals, Per Nilsson - Lead and Acoustic Guitars, keyboards, Jocke Claessom – Guitar, David Larsson – Bass, Henka Ohlsson – Drums, Matti Karki (guest vocals)
To me this demo is a cult. Simply as that. Only 13 minutes long, four tracks, but they do kick ass and they are stunning. “Succumb to Putrefaction” opens with a wonderful melodic riff, which transforms into more thrashy pattern, quickly rising up the tempo. This song reminds me CEMETARY a bit, especially with the keyboards in one motif, but also DISMEMBER could be mentioned as one of influences. Anyway, this is wonderful song, with many great riffs, as well as killer solo. Sure, ADVERSARY has that typical Swedish sound and patterns for melodies, but who cares, I can listen to it for ages. It’s not original much, but fuckin wonderful. The title track is like EPITAPH – heavy as fuck, fast and unmerciful, but with sharp melody and again killer guitar solo. I don’t know if there were any solos on previous demos, but the guitarists do brilliant job on this third demo. “Beyond All Blessings” opens with great slow riff, which soon changes into some faster tunes. It’s basically one riff played in few different ways, but it works well. The best part of the song (and the entire demo, by the way!!) is definitely the one when the acoustic guitar comes in. I can give my life for such motives and this is one of the reasons why I always appreciated Swedish scene much more than American one. It was the ability to create wonderful atmosphere and melodic background, which didn’t take anything of the aggressive side of their death metal. These Swedish lads had many great ideas and were much more productive and talented than most of their American friends. “Serpent Twilight” closes the demo and it’s simply another classic Swedish death metal song, in the vein of EPITAPH, CEMETARY, or DESULTORY. Two things must be said at the end – first, I absolutely love the production of the demo. It has the Swedish “thick” sound, but at the same time is quite raw and aggressive, which gives great result! I would love to have sound like that on my demo, if I ever was about to record one. The other thing is, if someone asks me about Matti Karki’s vocals... I don’t think he did many vocal parts on the demo, probably just few screams, especially in the chorus of “Succumb to Putrefaction”, where he cooperates with the main vocalist Jorgen. And Jorgen has great voice himself, so the effect is killer. But let’s be honest then – the entire demo kills. This is truly one of my favourite Swedish demo tapes of all times, I could easily put it together with the demos of NIHILIST, ENTOMBED, DISMEMBER, CREMATORY or NECROPHOBIC. Absolutely a must to listen to!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What a shame then that ADVERSARY didn’t take it further and never managed to record anything afterwards. A truly shame, because I’m sure that a full length would be a shredding piece of traditional Swedish death metal.
Best song: “Succumb to Putrefaction”
Final rate: 95/100