Are Nuclear Blast embracing full dynamic range?

Courtesy of NBR marketing email

Nuclear Blast Records‘ have announced that along with the rest of Dismember‘s discography, the band’s debut, Like An Overflowing Stream is now available on all streaming services in its long out of print and obscenely, indecently expensive original 1991 mastering.

The latter item is great news for those of us who remember what death metal sounded like in the ’90s before brick wall compression and limiting became the norm. Whether they realize it or not, one reason people love the sound of old vinyl is that less compressed masters were used. Modern vinyl is a toss up, but larger releases often have a less compressed master specifically for vinyl. Unfortunately, CDs, downloads and streaming services almost always get heavily compressed remasters when those are available.

But there is hope. Earache have been offering an alternative to the loudness trend for years with their Full Dynamic Range series. Metal Blade reissued their Mercyful Fate classics with the original masters. Peaceville Records seems to have left their back catalog largely alone. Hammerheart Records has produced some well-mastered reissues lately. Bright spots all. Additionally, many albums haven’t been remastered, or are available in both versions on streaming services (usually on different labels), but unless the label explicitly tags them as such (“Full Dynamic Range”, “1991 master”, etc.), finding them is a shot in the dark.

Perhaps this is Nuclear Blast’s first step in explicitly reissuing more of their back catalog in all its original dynamic glory.

Take action

If you want to see Nuclear Blast release more original masters, tell them so and include which titles you’d love to see. They don’t know what they can’t hear.

Some of Nuclear Blast’s classics (besides Dismember)

  • Abomination, Tragedy Strikes
  • Affliction, Prodigal Sun
  • Amorphis, The Karelian Isthmus
  • Amorphis, Tales From The Thousand Lakes
  • Atrocity, Hallucinations
  • Benediction, Subconscious Terror
  • Benediction, Dark Is The Season
  • Benediction, Transcend The Rubicon
  • Brutality, Screams of Anguish
  • Brutality, When The Sky Turns Black
  • Death Strike, Fuckin’ Death
  • Deceased, Luck of The Corpse
  • Defecation, Purity Dillution
  • Disembowelment, Transcendence Into The Peripheral
  • Disharmonic Orchestra / Pungent Stench, Split
  • General Surgery, Necrology
  • Gorefest, Mindloss
  • Gorefest, False
  • Hypocrisy, Pentralia
  • Hypocrisy, Osculum Obscenum
  • Hypocrisy, The Fourth Dimension
  • Hypocrisy, Inferior Devoties
    • Kataklysm, The Mystical Gate of Reincarnation
  • Macabre, Sinister Slaughter
  • Master, Master
  • Master, On The Seventh Day God Created…
  • Messhugah, Contradictions Collapse
  • Messhugah, None EP
  • Monstrosity, Imperial Doom
  • Mortification, Scrolls of The Megalith
  • Incubus, Beyond The Unknown
  • Pungent Stench, For God Your Soul, For Me Your Flesh
  • Pungent Stench, Been Caught Buttering
  • Sinister, Cross The Styx
  • Sinister, Diabolical Summonings
  • Sinister, Hate
  • Revenant, Prophecies of A Dying World
  • Righteous Pigs, Live And Learn
  • Righteous Pigs, Stress Related
  • Suffocation, Human Waste
  • Winter, Into Darkness
  • Winter, `Eternal Frost
  • Various Artists, Corporate Death
  • Various Artists, Death… Is Just The Beginning I
  • Various Artists, Death… Is Just The Beginning II
  • Various Artists, Death… Is Just The Beginning III

Suffer surface on Bandcamp

One of Sweden’s many underrated bands of the early ’90s, Suffer released a short burst of excellent material from ’89-’94, almost all of which has languished in relative obscurity. The band’s best known releases are the Global Warming EP (1993) and Structures LP (1994), both released on the then-fledgling Napalm Records (NPR 002 and NPR 006, respectively).

Working almost exclusively out of Sunlight Studios with Thomas Skogsberg at the boards, Suffer produced choppy, grinding, somewhat technical death metal with tortured vocals, and a subtle dose of the off-kilter weirdness unique to early Swedish death metal. If you’re down with the first Affliction LP, you’ll dig this. The exceptional mix on Structures — a shared credit between Skogsberg and Fred Estby (Dismember, etc.) — highlights drummer Perra Karlsson’s (Nominon, Bergraven, Heathendoom Records, etc.) combustible performance, and makes for a terrific headphone listen.

Neither those releases, nor any of the band’s demos or 7″s have been reissued, and originals have become rather pricey. Fortunately, Napalm has made lossless digital downloads for Global Warming and Structures available for purchase via Bandcamp.

Continue reading Suffer surface on Bandcamp

Obituary Livestreams

We should all strive to be as happy in life as Donald Tardy playing the drums on this jam room livestream of the band playing The End Complete. Dude has life figured out.

The set kicks in proper around 8:30, but don’t skip that first song. The band is in spectacular form, but the between-song goofing around is half the fun. Special mention for Mark Prator’s terrific mix. I kinda wish they’d release this properly because it’s a great version of the record to listen to.

They also did a more serious livestream for Cause of Death:

…and another jam room set of random tracks:

Sinister’s lost year and under-appreciated second coming

Too many people take Sinister for granted. The death metal veterans have been around long enough to become a household name, and the first three albums are undeniable classics, but many stop there. That’s a real shame because the band — revolving around founding member and last man standing, Aad Kloosterwaard — has quietly, steadfastly built one of the largest, densest, and most consistent catalogs in all of death metal. And what’s most surprising is how much of it is recent, with seven of their 13 albums arriving post-reformation, and five of those in the last 10 years.

Sinister, Era I — Late ’80s to 2003

This is the stuff most of us know, with three bonafide classics right out the gate. We’re skipping that to focus on what came after…

Continue reading Sinister’s lost year and under-appreciated second coming

Carsten Otterbach (1970-2018)

My first memory of Morgoth is reading a lukewarm review of Cursed that said something like “the songs aren’t so much songs as compositions, like Mozart throwing around baby blocks — 3 stars.” That sounded right up my alley, so a few years later I bought Odium on cassette and I was hooked. The intensity of Marc Grewe’s vocal performance and clarity of the mix hit me first, but it was the guitar tones and strangeness of Carsten and Harald’s riffing kept me coming back again and again. Cursed and the other albums came later and while they’ll always be in Odium’s shadow for me (I consider it one of the top 10 death metal albums of all time), Morgoth’s entire catalog has been in steady rotation for years.

Needless to say, this one stings a bit. RIP, Carsten.

Continue reading Carsten Otterbach (1970-2018)

Playlist Notes, Friday Nov 30, 2018

The Playlists

Pick your poison and don’t forget to add it to your library. We update the playlist as new stuff comes out.

[otw_shortcode_button href=”” size=”medium” icon_position=”left” shape=”square” color_class=”otw-red”]Apple Music[/otw_shortcode_button]   [otw_shortcode_button href=”″ size=”medium” icon_position=”left” shape=”square” color_class=”otw-green”]Spotify[/otw_shortcode_button]

What’s New

Sad news this week about the passing of Erik Lindmark, founder of DEEDS OF FLESH and Unique Leader Records. We’re going to open and close procedings with some old and recent Deeds of Flesh and fill in the middle with some great underground stuff that just came out. RIP Erik and all our best to both the Deeds and ULR families.

  1. DEEDS OF FLESH, “Paths of the Weakening” — This is classic Deeds and it was Unique Leader’s first release, ULE-001, all the way back in 1999. Talk about starting off on the right foot.
  2. A CANOROUS QUINTET, “Embryo of Lies” — If you’ve never heard ACQ, imagine a Gothenburg band that sits somewhere between old AT THE GATES and old DARK TRANQUILLITY. This tracks is from Only Pure Hate MMXVIII, which is a re-recording of their classic Only Pure Hate (1998, No Fashion Records). Out now as an independent release.
  3. CORPSEFUCKING ART, “Splatterphobia” — This is some thick and grisly stuff. Sounds like being beaten with your own severed limb. Out now on Comatose Music.
  4. LIVIDITY, “Perverseverance” (Pre-Release) — Illinois’ perverts of brutality are back with their first full-length since 2009’s To Desecrate and Defile. Simple and gross. Nice bass tone. Out now on Metal Age Music.
  5. ROTTENNESS, “Altered Cabron” — This is a 3-way split with COATHANGER ABORTION and SACRIFICIAL SLAUGHTER, but only ROTTENNESS meets the SV criteria for coverage so they’re representing. Raw, sloppy and out now on Horror Pain Gore Death Productions.
  6. CANCER, “Down the Steps” — Opening track to the new album, Shadow Gripped. This has a bit of the experimental feel they were doing on the last album but done much better. Never let anyone behind you when you’re going downstairs. Out now on Peaceville.
  7. OBSCENITY, “Invocation Obscure” — Another pre-release track from their upcoming Summoning the Circle LP. That guitar tone is thick. Out next week on Apostasy Records.
  8. DEEDS OF FLESH, “Portals to Canaan” — Title track to the last (and final?) Deeds of Flesh album, Portals to Canaan (Unique Leader Records).

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If you’re paying attention and wonder why the Deeds of Flesh albums aren’t in this list, it’s because they’re out of print and Amazon sellers have them set for stupid prices. Seek them out on Discogs.

Erik Lindmark (1972-2018)

Bummed to share this update from Unique Leader Records:

It is with great sadness that we must announce that our CEO & Founder, Erik Lindmark, passed away today after battling with Cirrhosis.

The indelible mark he has left on the Death Metal genre is monumental, both as a business man and as a musician. After building this label from scratch with his Deeds bandmates, Erik took Unique Leader to a level he had never expected it, or the genre, to get to.

During his time in the Hospital, Erik was absolutely implicit with his instructions to staff – requesting that everyone go full steam ahead with the label in his absence – which is exactly what we intend to do.

That being said, we will not be releasing anything in January so that we can make the necessary adjustments and delegations within the company. We would like to thank you all for your well wishes, support and kindness toward Erik on socials and via private correspondence.

There is a GoFundMe set up for Erik’s daughter Bella (5) and his wife. Click here to donate.

Rest in peace, Erik. You were a true warrior.


I didn’t know Erik but I definitely knew Unique Leader. They were always a uniquely focused label and if you see that logo on a release, you pretty much know you’re getting tight, brutal, in your face death metal. Their roster and discography tells the story better than I can: Disgorge, Spawn of Possession, Gorgasm, Unmerciful, Pyrexia, Inveracity, Inherit Disease, Gorod, Beheaded, Soreption, Pillory, Fallujah, and of course Deeds of Flesh.

RIP, Erik. You did good.

Relapse reissue Suffocation classics

Despise the Sun

Available on vinyl for the first time in over 12 years!

Pressing Info

  • 900 x Black Standard Gram
  • 100 x Black Inside Blood Red with Black, Red and Bone White Splatter Standard Gram * Exclusive*
  • Includes digital download

One of the most crushing releases in the brutal Death Metal legends’ catalog back on vinyl for the first time in over a decade! Cut at 45 RPM, with revised and reinterpreted artwork by original artist Travis Smith.  New York death metal legends SUFFOCATION are one of the most influential bands in the history of extreme music.  Despise The Sun has been called metal’s most extreme moment!

Souls to Deny

Available on vinyl for the first time in almost 15 years!

Pressing Info

  • 900 x Black Standard Gram
  • 100 x Royal Blue and Metallic Gold Merge with Cyan Blue, Brown and White Splatter Standard Gram * Exclusive*
  • Includes digital download

SUFFOCATION‘s comeback album from 2004 is a pulverizing exercise in brutality! First time on vinyl in almost 15 years!  Masterfully controlled yet frighteningly intense, Souls To Deny is a truly devastating display of technical death metal. Maniacally complex lead and rhythm guitar acrobatics intermix with dizzyingly proficient drum work, creating complex, savage riff collages. Often copied but never duplicated, SUFFOCATION remains at once intricately technical and immaculately heavy!

Release Date: January 25, 2019

Decibel announce 2019 tour lineup & dates

Damn, this is amazing. Not a whiff of metalcore or djent this time around and Trey’s even promising to play some Vincent-era tunes. Note that it’s CANNIBAL CORPSE and MORBID ANGEL coheadlining until the last week when Cannibal drops off and IMMOLATION comes on board as direct support. NECROT and BLOOD INCANTATION are on board for the endurance.

Press Release

The lineup for the 2019 Decibel Magazine Tour once again breaks new ground, as legendary death metallers Cannibal Corpse and Morbid Angel join forces for the first time ever in America to co-headline the winter tour. Rising Bay Area brutalizers Necrot and space-obsessed Denver death dealers Blood Incantation round out this once-in-a-lifetime bill. New York death metal icons Immolation will join the final week of the tour as main support to Morbid Angel, as Cannibal Corpse exit the tour after the New York City date.

“We’re really looking forward to our second appearance on the Decibel Tour; they always put together a killer line up and this time is no exception,” says Cannibal Corpse bassist Alex Webster. “We’re particularly excited to be hitting the road with our friends Morbid Angel. In fact, this will be the first time we’ve toured together in the USA.”

“Everyone here in the Morbid Angel camp are stoked to do this tour with Cannibal Corpse,” says Morbid Angel’s bassist/vocalist Steve Tucker. “To celebrate, Morbid Angel will be performing a mean-ass set of songs that will cover the entirety of our years of kicking ass.”

“We will be adding some of the older songs back to our set,” assures Morbid Angel founder Trey Azagthoth. “See you all there.”

Presented by Metal Blade Records, and sponsored by Silver Lining Music, Tankcrimes, Dark Descent Records and Nuclear Blast America, the eighth annual Decibel Magazine Tour is once again poised to be the heavy metal tour of the winter.

Tickets for the 2019 Decibel Magazine Tour go on sale Friday, November 16 at 10 AM local time and can be found at All dates and venues are below.

Get Tickets

Sun, Feb 17 – San Antonio, TX – Alamo Music Hall
Tue, Feb 19 – Tucson, AZ – Club Xs
Wed, Feb 20 – San Diego, CA – The Observatory
Thu, Feb 21 – Los Angeles, CA – The Fonda Theater
Fri, Feb 22 – Santa Ana, CA – The Observatory
Sat, Feb 23 – San Francisco, CA – The Regency Ballroom
Mon, Feb 25 – Portland, OR – Roseland Ballroom
Tue, Feb 26 – Seattle, WA – Showbox Market

Fri, Mar 1 – Denver, CO – The Oriental Theater
Sat, Mar 2 – Kansas City, MO – The Truman *NO CANNIBAL CORPSE
Sun, Mar 3 – Minneapolis, MN – Skyway Theater
Mon, Mar 4 – Chicago, IL – The Concord
Thu, Mar 7 – New York, NY – Playstation Theater
Fri, Mar 8 – Philadelphia, PA – TLA
Sat, Mar 9 – Worcester, MA – Palladium
Sun, Mar 10 – Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Soundstage
Mon, Mar 11 – Raleigh, NC – Lincoln Theater
Wed, Mar 13 – Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade
Thu, Mar 14 – Tampa, FL – Orpheum

Playlist Notes, Friday Nov 21, 2018

The Playlists

Pick your poison and don’t forget to add it to your library. We update the playlist as new stuff comes out.

[otw_shortcode_button href=”” size=”medium” icon_position=”left” shape=”square” color_class=”otw-red”]Apple Music[/otw_shortcode_button]   [otw_shortcode_button href=”″ size=”medium” icon_position=”left” shape=”square” color_class=”otw-green”]Spotify[/otw_shortcode_button]

What’s New

This week we’ve got tracks from the five big albums that came out since last time, a couple noteworthy pre-releases and a few oddball inclusions to keep it spicy.

  1. VENOM, “Bring Out Your Dead” (Pre-Release) — Cronos and crew return fire at VENOM, INC. with a chunky little number from their upcoming Storm the Gates LP. Available December 14th on Spinefarm Records.
  2. CANCER, “Thou Shalt Kill” — Shadow Gripped made my summer. Not only are Cancer back, but they brought a slew of good tunes with them and Simon Effemy’s pitch-perfect production takes you right back to 1993. Dig that huge 3/4 riff about 2 minutes in. Out now on Peaceville Records..
  3. HATE ETERNAL, “Portal of Myriad” — This is proving to be my favorite Hate Eternal album. A tad slower, a lot more musical, still brutal as fuck. Rutan hit it out of the park on the production as well. Excellent stuff. Out now on Season of Mist.
  4. OBSCENITY, “Infernal Warfare” (Pre-Release) — Germany’s Obscenity welcome a new vocalist and bassist to the fold and release their 10th full-length album just in time to mark their 30th year in business. Available December 7th on Apostasy Records. Pre-order on Bandcamp
  5. UNLEASHED, “They Rape the Land” — This White Christ quadrilogy has been iffy for me but they wrapped it up well with Hunt for White Christ. They’ve still got the modern Unleashed stuff going on (skittery riffs, killer solos, a slight black metal char), but they reined it in a bit and brought back some of the old chunk. Aside from a few moments of storytelling exposition, it just rips. Out now on Napalm Records.
  6. CRYPTOPSY, “Fear His Displeasure” — Grinding headfuckery from their second EP in this series. Not sure if there’s a 3rd coming or this is it. Fun fact: You can get a cassette compilation of both EPs. Out now on Hammerheart Records.
  7. AMON AMARTH, “With Oden on Our Side (Live at Summer Breeze: T-Stage)” — Amon Amarth lost me on the last album but there’s still a time and place for these guys and a documentary covering their 25-year existence accompanied by a massive live album that sounds as good as any studio album is well worth your time. Out now on Metal Blade.
  8. EVOKEN, “Ceremony of Bleeding” — New Jersey’s funeral masters are back and it feels right. If you know Evoken, you know what to expect. If not, buckle up, Buttercup. Out now of Profound Lore Records.
  9. BLOODBATH, “March of the Crucifiers” — It’s out, it’s massive, Nick Holmes is killing it. This one feels more in line with Bloodbath of old than Grand Morbid Funeral did, which is a bit less exciting for me but probably good for more dedicated fans. Out now on Peaceville Records.
  10. PSYCROPTIC, “We Were the Keepers” — Psycroptic barely meet the criteria for inclusion here at SV (their first album came out in 2000 but they formed in 1999, so they get in) and they’re not exactly death metal the last 10 years or so, but this new LP is kind of interesting. They dialed back the ‘core elements and threw in some ideas (like the female vocals you hear on this track) that really work for them. The drum/guitar interplay is as insane as ever, so listen for that if nothing else. Out now on Prosthetic Records.
  11. TERRORIZER, “Failed Assassin” — Terrorizer aren’t death metal and it’s tough to support them continuing to use the name without Jesse Pintado, but damn if this isn’t one of my favorite albums of the summer. Pete Sandoval is tearing it up and the riffs are on point. Works for me. Out now on The End Records

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