I’m pretty sure that I’ve reviewed this album. Perhaps it was for a past incarnation of Loucifer Speaks, or perhaps it was from one of my previous websites – such as ARSE! (you can Google it, as far as I know that site is still there). In fact, now that I think about it, I’m about 99.9% sure that I have reviewed this album before. But, that’s not going to stop me from doing it again.
Back in 2006 (I’m currently finding it hard to believe that it was that long ago!), I was massively into this album and Torture Killer. For me, Torture Killer occupied the same area of my musical tastes as Obituary do – so that placed them in some very important company. They played the kind of Death Metal that wouldn’t change the world, but would give you whiplash if you gave it half a chance. At the time, there were plenty of Technical Death Metal bands on the scene, so Torture Killer’s straight up, no bullshit, old school Death Metal was oddly refreshing. As clichéd as it sounds – Torture Killer struck a chord with me.
Looking back now, I can’t remember how I found out about the band (it may have been due to a recommendation on Obituary’s old forum). Nor can I remember if I knew that Chris Barnes (Six Feet Under, ex-Cannibal Corpse – which is pretty odd, since Torture Killer started off as a Six Feet Under / Obituary covers band) was the vocalist for this particular album. All I can remember is that from the very first listen, I was hooked. It was brutal, catchy and – perhaps most of all – made me want either growl along or learn to play an instrument so that I could play along. There are no over-the-top, overly long guitar solos here, there are no bizarre time signatures – instead, the music is just the bare necessities. It’s the blood and guts of Death Metal. It’s natural, it’s savage and it’s damn powerful. Basically, I like Torture Killer for the same reasons that I love Obituary. It’s all music that effects me on a very base level.
Anyway, enough of my trip down memory lane – I think it’s time that I focused on the music.
“Swarm!” is a Death Metal album through and through. Catchy riffs chug their way through its 34 minutes (give or take!) and it’s hard not to want to bang your head along to it. Like I said before, it’s nothing that hasn’t been done before, but when it’s done with this much passion, who fuckin’ cares? Basically, if you like old school Death Metal, there’s a strong chance that you’ll like this. Afterall, I did… and still do…
All of the tracks are of the same kind of quality. There aren’t really any that are noticeably better than the others and there’s certainly none that are bad. I think it’s fair to say that Torture Killer are consistently good (as later proved with their “Sewers” album – which, perhaps oddly, I prefer) – with Torture Killer, you always know what you’re getting (although, it may still tear your face off). Yep, all of the tracks are great, but – if for some unfathomable reason you can only check out a couple, then I highly recommend “Forever Dead” and “Multiple Counts of Murder”. Since I’m a nice person, I’ve even search YouTube for those tracks so that you can give them a listen. If you like ‘em, buy the album.
It pleases me greatly to discover that Torture Killer have recently released an EP called “I Chose Death”. I will, of course, be buying this at the earliest opportunity and possibly writing another review
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