Cassette of the Week: Entombed, Left Hand Path

“Cassette of the Week” is a new column where I’m going to review an album that I actually purchased on cassette when it originally came out.

Yeah, I’m “old.” Suck it.

This week’s cassette is, as above indicated, Swedish Death Metal pioneers Entombed’s 1990 debut, Left Hand Path.

 

This debut album has held up really well.

I remember when it came out all the magazines (remember those?) like RIP and Metal Maniacs were touting this as the Next Big Thing. And they were right: death metal in 1990 was utterly new (and interestingly now seems old hat). Though I prefer Wolverine Blues overall (also possessing the cassette), I’ve been listening to this nearly every day the last few weeks. The buzzsaw “Sunlight Sound” (named for the Swedish studio where Entombed essentially maxed out all the knobs on their distortion pedals, tuned down to Drop C and, frankly, Rocked The Fuck Out) isn’t nearly as muddy as I remembered, and the songs are fast, heavy and (a sorely unused adjective in today’s music) short. To quote Eric in Killing Zoe, “We go in, we get what we want, we come out.”

Left Hand Path totally does that. Repeatedly. And well.

Though the lyrics (when they’re intelligible) are at best juvenile and at worst (speaking as a professional) suggestive of moderate to severe antisocial (or dissocial, if you’re European) personality disorder, Left Hand Path is a burner. 47 minutes of fast, confident fury.

I’ve been dozing off with it, lately. It’s so angry it’s relaxing, like having a friend rant about things you don’t have the energy to be angry about.

Because you’re old.

 

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