SKULL331

OBSZÖN GESCHÖPF, Day of Suffering (2000, demo)

The skull:
There are plenty of logo-chomping skulls out there, and this one at first glance appears no different from any other, but look close and you’ll notice that the bottom jaw is scaled completely differently from the rest of the skull. It’s got mismatched dentition, too. I have to assume that either the top or the bottom was different at one point, probably the top, but after the artist scaled it back from whatever idiotic monster he originally drew, he forgot to similarly update the bottom half, leaving us with the chimeric skull we see here. That’s exactly the kind of inattention to detail that can elevate a Big Dumb Skull from the ordinary to the sublime, and while I won’t say that this cover has been so elevated, I must nevertheless applaud its dauntless stupidity.

The music:
This is simplistic and fairly boring electronic industrial music on to which boxy, heavy guitars have been grafted. The guitar parts can hardly be called riffs, as they are mostly single-chord chugs to go along with the bloopy keyboards and do little aesthetic work beyond signifying that Obszön Geschöpf are metal in some way. There are some guitar solos as well, but these are hilariously bad. They’re played poorly per se, but they are comically out of place amid the bargain basement techno thumps and square wave burps. Obszön Geschöpf are basically a one-man band, but hillariously it’s a French guy trying to toughen up his image with a German band name (and he even got that wrong, failing to properly decline the adjective; the name translates to “Obscene Creature.”) I’ve written about industrial metal before, and I’ve gone on record saying that it’s fairly hard to do the style well, but this demo is never in any danger of crossing the fine line between stupid and clever.
— Friar Johnsen

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