OBSERVANT, Corrodead (2010, demo)

The skull:
This skull comes with accompanying crossbones and is rendered a rust color to suggest corrosion. Look at what Observant is trying to convey here: death + corrosion = corrodead. That’s some kinda genius. As a cover and a concept, ain’t nothing going on here.

The music:
Once again we have a skull cover without much to offer and music that’s equally apathetic. Oh sure, Observant might sound like they mean it, but this is utterly unremarkable melodic death metal with some chunky, downtuned grooving added in. The vocals are lower than the norm in this genre, like Monstrosity/Bolt Thrower pitch. Sometimes they’re scratchier or more grating. They almost attain melody in one small part of “Smoke Screen.” None of it is memorable. The musicians have played in other unimportant bands while the vocalist has been fronting Finntroll since 2006. You kinda understand why they’ve not released anything other than this 2010 demo. The other guys: “Hey, vocalist, you wanna come down to rehearsal and work up some new Observant material?” The vocalist: “Nah, I gotta tour the world again and get paid well in Finntroll. Maybe next year?” And so it goes, year after year after year. Don’t look for any new Observant material anytime soon. — Friar Wagner

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