Metal Review – Miasmal: Cursed Redeemer

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Metal Review – Miasmal: Cursed Redeemer
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Miasmal: Cursed Redeemer
Death Metal
Century Media Records
May 13th, 2014
Release length: 37:11
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Back in 2011, Gothenburg, Sweden’s Miasmal made an attempt to make their existence in the Death Metal world known with their self-titled debut effort through Dark Descent Records. While it contained eight newly recorded tracks, it also possessed the band’s 2008 self-titled demo. The effort was met with mixed opinion, but largely it was the demo and EP material that proved to be the more superior part of that release. After about three years, the four-piece Death Metal group return signed with Century Media Records to present their follow-up album Cursed Redeemer, as well as show off their new attitude. But are these eight songs worth checking out, or does the shift in direction prove to have been a bit too risky?

Unlike their previous album, Cursed Redeemer has a thick audio quality to it that gives the instruments a little more meat on the bones, though the vocals sound a little more raw with a strong echo effect to the harsher roars and shouting. “Call of the Revenant” hammers away with Bolt Thrower style aggression in the main verses that seem to push the song a bit over-the-top in all the right ways. However, some two-stepping thins the performance out to more of a Punk inspired pit than anything. It’s not out of place, but does find the band retracting a bit before the intense guitar solo amps things back up again. But when it comes to that Swedish sound, this and the solid burdening “Until the Last” end up the only two places you really seem to get a steady helping of it, as the rest of the material isn’t always as straight-forward.

“Cursed Redeemer” starts with a good dose of melody to the riffs with over a solid minute of enthusiastic build up to what becomes a bludgeoning nicely influenced with some Thrash elements. The speed works well with the deeper riffs and rougher vocals, and the Autopsy style hooks during the chorus compliment the two-step drums perfectly. “Whisky Train” has a Thrash vibe at play throughout, though a bit dirtier with some Southern style riffs, especially in the bridge that leads to the slower King Diamond-esque minimal guitar notes two and a half minutes in. Then there’s “A Veiled Remembrance,” which finds a mixture of crushing Bloodbath grooves with what sounds like limited Crossover Thrash input to some passages, specifically the conclusion. It makes for as addicting a cut as it is an interesting combination.

Cursed Redeemer is a huge step forward in every respect for Miasmal. First of all, this is how their self-titled album should have sounded, rich and aggressive with enough roughness that works perfectly with the crisp audio, unlike their previous overly digital affair. The amount of energy captured is also commendable, showing a band with great confidence and pride in their work. The subtle hints of other genre’s thrown in also help to keep most of the album from just being another carbon copy Swedish Death Metal offering that would inevitably get lost in the mix, all the while never forsaking their roots. Cursed Redeemer acts as a clean slate for Miasmal, and the group does not fail to impress. If you enjoy the rich Swedish signature but want a little more substance to it, this is an album you need to hear.

01. Cursed Redeemer – 4:31
02. Call of the Revenant – 3:46
03. Whisky Train – 3:57
04. Excelsior – 4:58
05. A Veiled Remembrance – 5:01
06. Until the Last – 4:53
07. Frozen in Time – 4:57
08. 2013 – 5:09
Initial Pressing Score: 8.5/10

Miasmal
Miasmal

Digital review copy of this release provided by Century Media Records.