Am I wrong, or does Deutschland lag just a little in the death metal category? I mean sure, they gave us national treasures like Pavor, Defeated Sanity, and Necrophagist (not to mention current tech darlings Obscura), but when compared to their neighbors to the north (that's Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark, for the topographically challenged), Germany pales in comparison. Don't get me wrong here, I know that a shit-ton of great music has come from this country throughout the years--I'm just pointing out that their death metal contributions, quite specifically, might be a bit out of proportion. So what's the deal, Germany? Why are you holding back on the crushing slammz? What gives?
But again, I digress. Today's post offers Germany a fair chance to redeem themselves in the Grinding Death Department, via three albums from two bands, all released in 1991 and 1992. Hail Satan.
First off, we have the only two full-length albums from the terribly-named and awesomely-haircutted LEMMING PROJECT. LP, like their fellow Teutonic shred-wizards Pavor, hailed from North Rhine-Westphalia, and delivered an odd, shambling, semi-repetitive take on chugging DM, replete with cool intros, weird, out-of-nowhere gang shouts, and Tardy-esque vocals (although these guys veer toward thrash where Obituary favored doom). While the drums here are a little sloppy and the "Lemming Project sound" tends to stick in the "mid-tempo" range a little more than I prefer, both 1991's Extinction and 1992's Hate And Despise are both undeniable winners, functioning as solid opening and closing statements for a kick-ass band that disappeared long before its time.
If pressed, I'd say Extinction is the better of these two releases for my money, but both albums contain plenty of thunderous, drunken-brontosaurus diminished-chord march-riffing, and both will serve well as balm for the chafed and brittle Hessian soul. Behold:
HATE AND DESPISE (1992)
Lemming Project Metallum/Last.FM
JUMPIN' JESUS - THE ART OF CRUCIFYING (1991)
Next up, we have the also-unfortunately-named JUMPIN' JESUS, who, like Pavor and Lemming Project, came from North Rhine-Westphalia as well. If you download any of the three albums in this post, I urge you to make it The Art of Crucifying, as I consider this oddball gem to be one of the lost classics of the Early-90's-European-Death-Metal Pantheon. Seriously... If there is a fault somewhere within this album, I have yet to find it--Crucifying is a solid face-melter from start to finish, with just enough curveballs buried deep inside to ensure repeat listenings for nigh unto infinity.
As is always the case, Jumpin' Jesus ceased to be immediately after the release of this album--which begs the question: could it be that perhaps Germany isn't death metal-deficient at all, that maybe they've merely mastered the concept of "quality over quantity" in said genre?
Jumpin' Jesus Metallum/Last.FM