Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
The absolute pinnacle of early '90s brutal death metal
Tom P. the Underground Navigator | Park Forest, IL USA | 02/24/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"1991-92 was a watershed period for death metal debuts, with bands such as Grave, Gorguts, Suffocation, Vader, et al., all emerging from relative underground obscurity to newly signed bands. Fleshcrawl were the token brutal death metal band on Germany's Black Mark Productions' roster, and for my money they managed to stand out from the overcrowded pack.
I recall "Descend Into The Absurd" not being a particularly easy album to find on this side of the Atlantic even in 1992 when it was first out (let alone now with nobody ever having bothered to reissue it since), with Black Mark's spotty distribution at best in U.S. shops. But after hearing the band on college radio I did manage to track down a copy, and it kept getting plays long after I ditched the majority of my death metal collection when my musical interests changed in the mid-'90s (I have thankfully since gotten back into it in a big way).
If you are at all into early '90s brutal death metal, YOU NEED THIS CD, pure and simple. And yes, I did say PINNACLE in the headline -- this album is the perfect document of death metal circa 1992 and it's executed (as it were) flawlessly, with a meticulously crafted precision that could only come out of Germany. It's so POWERFUL -- it generates a brutal, multi-layered wall of sound throughout. The production is lethal, the vocals are sick and guttural, the riffs are intricate and the song structures memorable.
And NO ONE blasts better than drummer Bastian Herzog on this album -- listen to the classic track "Purulent Bowel Erosion" for proof -- his drumwork throughout the entire CD is brilliant, making him one of the leading drummers in all of death metal. His drum patterns are so intricate and original. His style here is somewhat reminiscent of legendary Carcass skin beater Ken Owen on "Symphonies Of Sickness," and that's saying a lot!
This album predates Fleshcrawl's shift to a more Swedish-influenced sound, which continues on, with the band still going strong to this day (though Herzog is the sole remaining member from this album's line-up). "Descend Into The Absurd" is instead more of a still frame frozen in time of where brutal underground death metal was in general in 1992 when it was recorded, and '92 was one of the peak years ever for the sound.
Finally, Uwe Jarling's cover art is stunning. I've always loved it. Black Mark in general had a lot of great album covers from around this time and this ranks as one of the best.
For all these reasons, I still for the life of me can't figure out why this has never been reissued or why I am the only person to date to review this on Amazon. Someone seems to be finally taking notice though, as "Descend Into The Absurd" is becoming rarer by the day to find, driving prices up on the internet. I hope this review serves to spread the word. An all-time personal favorite."