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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Entombed

Uprising

Review by Mike Korn

Over 10 years ago, Sweden's Entombed blasted onto the underground metal scene with "Left Hand Path", an album which is still the heaviest death metal album ever released. The disc unleashed the floodgates of Swedish death metal, a subgenre unto itself. As time passed,the fathers of the movement, Entombed, seemingly abandoned their creation. With their 3rd LP "Wolverine Blues", the group switched to a much simpler,rock-based approach, mixing that up with the brutal heaviness for which they had become known. After "Wolverine Blues", everything went off the rails for Entombed. It took them forever to get their records out and when they did come out, they were disappointing. The nadir was the appalling "Same Difference",which saw them entering indie rock territory and abandoning most of their metal roots. I gave up on the band, switching my allegiance to Hypocrisy, In Flames and other Swedish bands who stuck to their guns.

After yet another lengthy delay, we now have "Uprising", which marks a do or die period for the band. It's clear after just one listen that the band has regained most of the crunch which they had lost. The "chainsaw" sound is back on the guitars again. However, they have not stepped back to their death metal days. "Uprising" instead seems to be the natural successor to "Wolverine Blues".The style is stripped-down, incredibly rough and raw rock music bashed out with tons of distortion. There's a punk feeling to a lot of it and fans of bands as diverse as Motorhead, Helmet, Nashville Pussy and Black Sabbath should find something of interest here. I don't think Entombed will ever regain the throne they abdicated in the mid-90's, but "Uprising" shows they still have something to offer to fans of hard and heavy music.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2001 Year Book Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Seeing In Red
This is a great way to open the LP. It is raucous and rude, with a kind of bluesy catchiness to it but also a lot of fury and one of the album's best.
Say It In Slugs
A pretty strange track, this is slower paced and very sludgy but occasionally picking up speed. It retains some traces of that early Entombed sound, especially on a doomy break where I thought they were going to go into the last part of "Left Hand Path". It is a very strange climax to the song.
Won't Back Down
A high octane metal rocker, this is not that memorable but pleasing nonetheless.
Insanity's Contagious
One of the more purely death metal tracks on the CD, this one has some of that glorious Entombed crunch of old. It is fast and powerful.
Something Out Of Nothing
Actually reminding me a little of Bob Rock-era Metallica, this cut is nothing special.
Scottish Hell
A cover of a track by the obscure thrash band Dead Horse, this has a slow and somewhat majestic feeling. It features the classic lyrical line "Satan kissed my dog today..."
Time Out
The bluesiest track on the album, this didn't do too much for me. I'm just too much of a fan of old Entombed to swallow a track this commercial.
Year In Year Out
An average song, this is a little bit Black Sabbathy, but featuring processed vocals which cater to the alternative crowd.
Returning To Madness
It's heavy enough but very clunky and unfocused. The cutt feels like it was written in bits and pieces. It is a poor track.
Come Clean
This one really kicks it! It hits the throttle hard and never lets up, with some bone-breaking riffs. This is like old Entombed playing a punk track.
In The Flesh
Creepy, tinny organ,sounding like something out of a horror flick, provides the intro to this slow track. This is a song which kind of oozes over the listener, but it is a bit too long.
Superior
This is the first of 3 "bonus" tracks the band added to this edition of the CD. All should have been left off. This is probably the best, but that's not saying much. It is in the vein of the rest of "Uprising" but not as memorable.
The Only Ones
Another non-descript by the numbers track, this one shows vague echoes of Sabbath, but the lead guitar work is poor. The album as a whole features pretty average lead work, never Entombed's strong suit.
Words
Tbis cut is fast,aggressive and mercifully brief, as it adds nothing to the album.
 
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