01. Jesters of Recession
02. Ceased by Failure
03. Spawn of Ignorance
04. Unanimous Approval
05. Dismal Fate
07. Incompetent Secondary
09. Actions for Loss
10. Crude Domination
11. Unbeknownst (inst. outro)
12. Clogged Sewer Pipe *
13. Ceased by Failure *
14. Disembodied *
(*) Bonus tracks recorded live in
Cleveland, Ohio on March 28th, 1992
Re-edición del único álbum editado en el '93 por ésta auténtica banda leyenda americana del Death Metal!! Remasterizado con 3 temas extra y diseño mejorado, ésto es una obra maestra esencial para cualquier amante de GRAVE, INCANTATION, FUNEBRE, CREMATORY, DEMILICH.
¡Cómo se ha resistido esta reedición! La versión original de Iniquitous, primer y único álbum de Rottrevore, ya se había convertido en toda una pieza de coleccionista. En 1993 fue editado por la extinta Drowned Productions con una limitadísima tirada de sólo mil copias, que con el paso del tiempo se han revalorizado desproporcionadamente. Desde entonces, el modo más factible de hacerse con material de la banda sin arruinarse en el intento consistía en adquirir el recopilatorio Disembodied de Necroharmonic, que incluye su maqueta y algún que otro EP. Ha habido que esperar hasta 2009 para que un sello, Xtreem Music en este caso, tomase la iniciativa y editase de nuevo este preciado disco de auténtico death metal.
Con el guitarrista y vocalista Mark Mastro al frente, Rottrevore eran conocidos por practicar un death metal mórbido, denso y realmente primitivo. Les caracterizaba el timbre sucio de sus guitarras, cuya afinación era netamente grave. La distorsión podrida del bajo era otro de sus rasgos reconocibles, junto a unas voces guturales sobrecogedoras al máximo. La conjunción de esos elementos profería un sonido grueso pero crudo al mismo tiempo, que ni siquiera en el álbum distaba mucho del que obtuvieron en las demos. El resto se lo montaban a base de riffs monolíticos, brutalmente rudimentarios y toscos hasta la médula. Más o menos como si fuesen una versión menos pulida de los primeros Immolation, o quizás como unos Incantation con mayor variedad en el apartado rítmico (que puede llegar a ser realmente pegadizo). Sus hirientes y enredados solos son otra de las marcas registradas de la casa.
La banda se mantuvo en activo durante pocos años y no editaron demasiado material pero a pesar de eso, Iniquitous tiene bien ganado su estatus de piedra angular del género. Es uno de esos discos en los que cada corte destaca por un motivo u otro. “Disembodied”, por ejemplo, posee unas inhumanas voces de ultratumba empastadas sobre algunos de los fragmentos más salvajes del álbum. Los ritmos entrecortados de “Action for loss” disfrutan una cadencia muy adictiva, que se repite en los ritmos flotantes de “Incompetent secondary” (¡cómo zumban las cuerdas de ese bajo!) y, en general, en cualquiera de las composiciones de Rottrevore. Composiciones oscuras y elementales que aún sobreviven al paso del tiempo.
Esta versión resucitada de Iniquitous es además muy respetuosa respecto a la original. A modo de bonus incluye tres temas en directo con sonido de aceptable calidad: “Clogged sewer pipe”, “Ceased by failure” y “Disembodied”. El libreto del CD se ha mejorado, incluyendo letras y fotos de la banda que también se pueden encontrar en la edición en vinilo, la cual posee un atractivo diseño en verde salpicado. Cualquiera de las dos alternativas es aconsejable para disfrutar al fin del histórico legado de Rottrevore.
Rottrevore was one of those brutal death metal bands of the early nineties. In those days I’d never heard of this band from Pittsburg, USA. Don’t blame me, I’m just not one of those diehard death metal freaks that wants it all. When Xtreem Records re-released this album, I was only vaguely, very vaguely aware of this band, but never actually heard it. Listening to their sole album ’Iniquitous’, which was originally released in 1993, I understand why this album gained a cult status among the extreme death metal horde.
Anno 2009 this album still sounds impressively blunt, brutal and aggressive. I read in other reviews comparisons with Suffocation (‘Effigy Of The Forgotten’ period), but except for the low-pitched growls and the time spirit I don’t exactly understand this. I think this is mostly a lot slower, but also heavier, rawer and darker. Think of Incantation, Immolation and sometimes also Asphyx, especially because of the ultra low death growls of singer/guitarist Mark Mastro (who later founded Eviscium). It’s not an crazy thought, since I noticed that Mark originally designed Immolation’s band logo.
Rottrevore regurgitates a coarse-grained, gritty type of death metal that contains extremely low muttering grooves that reminds me of a death metal equivalent of the thrash-heaviness of Dark Angel’s ‘Time Does Not Heal’. Especially the bass is so excruciatingly low that it crushes your wild trembling diaphragm through your rectum, like a Sunn O))) avant la lettre. Especially in ‘Incompetent Secundary’ (which you can listen here on the YouTube clip) is the band infecting its death metal with friable sludge-doom. Quite remarkable that a sixteen year old album can still surprise me with such an intense heavy sound. This is a big fuck you to ProTools and all those other modern silliness.
Xtreem made a new layout for the album and added three live tracks from Cleveland, 26-3-1992. The recording quality is not too best, but the nostalgic atmosphere is charming. Also it’s more like two songs, since ‘Clogged Sewer Pipe’ is more like a showcase for Marks immense low and imposing growl. Xtreem released the album also on splatter green vinyl.
This type of brutal death metal, with its rudimental and disorganized production, is hardly made these days (also Immolation shifted towards another sound) and this album is therefore a typical exponent of brutal death metal of the early nineties. But a damn good one! The band initially intended to reunite since this album is re-released and they were booked to play on New Jersey Death Metal Festival this month, but due to unknown reasons they cancelled and it’s unknown if they’re still together.
It’s not often you can judge a whole album by the opening 10 seconds, but you can with Rottrevore’s debut, and only, full-length album Iniquitous. With the bass guitar belching out low-as-fuck tunes from the get-go, you just know this is going to be one hell of an album.
The term “heavy” is basically synonymous with metal, seeing as it’s “heavy metal,” but I can tell you right now: You have not heard death metal as heavy as this. Fact. Iniquitous sounds like it’s under extra gravity, crushing the instruments to further extremities than they were meant to go. The bass guitar is obviously the best example. It may just be the most downtuned bass guitar I’ve heard. Like the very opening of “Jesters Of Recession,” or at about 16 seconds of “Conspiracized,” you can almost physically feel how heavy it is. The guitars are just as heavy themselves, with a very small amount of fuzz to compliment them. The riffs are very old-school (expected, seeing as this album was released in 1993), so fans of that sort of death metal will be in Heaven here. The riffs remind me of Suffocation, to an extent, so if you can picture a filthier version of, say, Effigy Of The Forgotten, you’re heading in the right direction.
None of the music here is very fast, which definitely will not be everyone’s cup of tea, but that is what makes Iniquitous what it is. I picture it to not be as fast, but a lot more calculated it its delivery. Every riff, every drum beat, and every Hell-spawned growl seems very articulated and precise. We are treated to a fast drumming section at 1:40 in “Disembodied,” but these segments aren’t frequent. The drumming is superb, however, and a faster style would not have worked as well, to be honest.
I have to mention the vocals, as they are, in a word, vicious. The songs are laced with these deadly growls that sound like the evil twin of George Fisher. The lyrics are not your usual death and gore, either, which shows that Rottrevore were not influenced by the likes of Cannibal Corpse or Death at that time. You can’t understand what he’s saying, anyway, but it’s still a nice observation.
Overall, Iniquitous is a classic, very underground piece of death metal that everyone should hear. Unfortunately, the first press of this album is now only available to those with a lot of money (I paid $100 for mine, which is apparently a bargain), but there have been rumours that it’s going to be re-released soon. If it is, I suggest that you go out and buy this album, because you will almost certainly not be disappointed. Brutal, crushing, heavy-as-all fuck death metal not for the faint of heart.
The only full length the band ever released. This recording has every single song from the demos, so if you are interested but are not sure of this band, it is worth it to just get this. It is highly convenient when bands do this, release a full length before they split up, and although we are unfortunate that they are no longer with us, we are fortunate that they ended with the bang they did.
Everything said about the demos can be said for this album, the album is like a long demo, the recording is just slightly better than on their demos, and the songs are just the same. Seeing as the band was not around for long enough to go into any sort of musical experimenting or evolution, we can see a distinct time in the musicians’ lives, and so all their stuff sounds similar. Really they only have as many songs as is on the full length, which happens to be 11. Seeing as my opinion of the demos is that they are hard to get through, you can imagine that the full length can hardly be listened to in its entirety. Although 38 minute sin length may not seem that long, but this music is so dense and thick it seems like you are stuck in time for those few precious minutes. That is part of the appeal of this music, and I would say is also the appeal of all music that has virtually no hooks and very little riffs that are catchy. That they weigh down on you like a ton of bricks, making the music even more heavy, and also making it hard to copy and form into a trend. This album has the effect of an anchor being put around your neck, dragging you into the dark obscure waters of Rottrevore’s brain. I can link their song writing to a mid-tempo Hate Eternal, so fans of the latter if they are tired of the blasting should be able to have the focus necessary for this music.
Seriously, fans of ultra technical and complex shit should listen to this, for this is slower and less extreme, but has a similar effect. Over al a great accomplishment, and gets extra points for gathering all of Rottrevore’s work into one handy-dandy slipcase CD.
Anyone who has ever used the term 'crushing' to describe a death metal band or album hasn't got a fucking clue until they've heard "Iniquitous" from Rottrevore. This record sits up there with "Mental Funeral" and "Effigy of the Forgotten" as one of the heaviest offerings to ever come out of the classic American death metal scene. Unfortunately, because it was released on a relatively small Spanish label and has been long out of print, it is very often overlooked and forgotten. Interestingly enough, these guys were actually once signed to Relapse Records but for whatever reason switched to a different label for the release of their second EP before finally settling on Drowned Productions.
Rottrevore deliver a form of ridiculously heavy, down-tuned death metal that will pulverize your spine. The songs are mostly played at mid tempo with a strong emphasis on heavy riffing rather than aggression and speed. There are times when the tempo really picks up, but these instances are few and far between and are executed tastefully on this album.
The production is unbelievable and can best be described as 'pants-shitting'. The only album I've heard whose sound even comes close to this in sheer heaviness is "Four Depressive Seasons" by Illdisposed. From the moment you hit 'Play', you're instantly submerged by a bubbling sea of thick guitars, bone-snapping drums and a bass tone that's lower than the lifeless chasms of hell. Listen to the song 'Conspiracized' around the 0:15 second mark to experience a brief bass solo that's more akin to a tank flattening a graveyard. The vocals are delivered both by Mark Mastro and Chris Weber. Together they are able to form some of the most inhumanly low, naturally-produced growls that make Chris Barnes sound like a weeping schoolgirl.
If you're looking for groove, mosh, blastbeats and headspins then go listen to Internal Bleeding or Skinless. But if you want pure, brutal death metal untouched by commercial trends then do yourself a favor and find this CD.
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