Feast Of The Repulsive Dead

Redefining Darkness
rating icon 9 / 10

Track listing:

01. A Quiet Night In The Cemetery
02. Feast Of The Repulsive Dead
03. Stalked, Strangled and Stabbed
04. The Morbid Mortician
05. Welcome Back To Life
06. I'll Swallow Your Soul
07. The Hack Shack
08. Isolated Existence
09. The Graves Of Matool
10. Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers
11. Eve Of The Apocalypse

Named after the hotel in cult director Lucio Fulci's grotesque classic "The Beyond", SEVEN DOORS proudly walk the well-trodden line between crushing, old-school death metal and mind-bending, bloody horror. This, it barely needs stating, is an excellent idea. The metal underground is awash with similar conceits, of course, but death metal and horror are such sublime bedfellows that yet another collision between old-school riffs and grotesque imagery, ripped straight from the demolished skull of a shrieking nubile, is always welcome. When the end product of death-plus-horror turns out to be as magnificent as "Feast Of The Repulsive Dead", it feels like the best idea in the fucking world.

With a rampaging, bottom-heavy sound that exerts more swing and attack than you might anticipate from a one-man band (SEVEN DOORS is all the work of Ryan Wills),  these songs hark back to the days when death metal was generally brutal and catchy, and the rabble-rousing chorus slogans virtually wrote themselves. After a grimly chilling instrumental overture courtesy of horror-wave guru Slasher Dave (ACID WITCH),  the title track slams down a scabby, pus-filled blueprint for everything that follows. This is the monstrous but momentous savagery of bands like ASHPYX, GORGUTS, MALEVOLENT CREATION and, more recently, SKELETAL REMAINS (whose guitarists Mike De La O and Chris Monroy both contribute cameo solos here),  but with the added bonus of NECROPHAGIA-levels of horror obsessions festering beneath every cudgeling groove. The urge to scream "what's not to like?" while robustly gutting a dim-witted teenager with a rusty hacksaw is almost impossible to resist, and every song that follows seems to heighten the thrill.

"Stalked, Strangled And Stabbed" delivers on its title's promise and sounds like CANNIBAL CORPSE remixed by Leatherface. "The Morbid Mortician" is genuinely unhinged, steeped in the pompous magic of '90s DM and delivered with a rabid rawness that owes at least one kidney to the Stockholm / Sunlight Studios sound. "I'll Swallow Your Soul" is filthy, swaggering and violent enough to make the late, great Killjoy (of NECROPHAGIA) spin approvingly in his celestial grave. "Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers" is every bit as bug-eyed and bellicose as one could desire and full of gleefully lobotomized twists and turns. Meanwhile, a thick fog of bloodthirstiness permeates every riff, roar and rapacious blastbeat.

No off-piste meanderings and no progressive detours: just pure, offal-drenched death metal. "Feast Of The Repulsive Dead" is one of the most obnoxiously entertaining extreme metal records in recent memory.

Author: Dom Lawson
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