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Nasum - Helvete (10/10) - Sweden - 2003

Genre: Grindcore
Label: Relapse Records
Playing time: 35:16
Band homepage: Nasum

Tracklist:

  1. Violation
  2. Scoop
  3. Living Next Door To Malice
  4. Moonshield
  5. Time To Discharge
  6. Bullshit
  7. Relics
  8. We Curse You All
  9. Doombringer
  10. Just Another Hog
  11. Drop Dead
  12. I Hate People
  13. Go!
  14. The Final Sleep
  15. Slaves To The Grind
  16. Breach Of Integrity
  17. The Everlasting Shame
  18. Your Words Alone
  19. Preview Of Hell
  20. Illogic
  21. Whip
  22. Worst Case Scenario
Nasum - Helvete

Get the FUCK on this train, now. It's leaving. To where? To the lowest bowels of pure hatred, aggression, pain, injustice, suffering, etc. You get the picture. NASUM's 2003's masterpiece entitled "Helvete" is not an inch far from the perfect way in how to translate pure anger into music. You thought Tschaikovsky was a freaking aggressive lunatic sent from hell to torture you and your children and grandchildren forever? Think again.

Now to cut the crap and get to the music. Grindcore is, like all other forms of extreme aggressive music, very hard to do right. The main problem is how to create a sound that is both violent, yet meaningful, not generic-sounding and inspired. Ever since NAPALM DEATH unleashed their violence back in 1982 and evolved from the lame Hard/Crustcore Punk scene into what we call today "Grind", the world of music has never been the same. After this evolution through pain and political injustice, this form of music became faster and faster until the human limitation in terms of speed and aggression was achieved. Without the aid of modern machinery you simply can not get any more imposing and fierce as the godfathers of modern grind, NASUM. Sadly, they have ceased to exist, due to the fact that the former guitarist/bassist/vocalist Mieszko Talarczyk (RIP) was killed in a tsunami a few years back. With his death, a hero of the modern extreme music scene passed away, with no apparent heir to carry on his genius work.

"Helvete", meaning simply "hell", lives exactly up to its name. The infernal guitar sawing and fast drum assaults, combined with Mieszko's incredibly imposing screams and guttural deliveries create an audible and authentic form of suffering, exactly the way the fantasy world of hell should sound like, although the main intention of this album is to tell the listener that we are already in our own self made hell. While the average song on this LP is fairly long, for grindcore standards at least, with an expected value ranging from 1:20 to 1:40, every one of them has its own aura and message. Unlike most albums out of every and any genre, there are absolutely no filler tracks and one must perceive this piece of art as a whole to fully absorb the sense of its being. The short songs discharge themselves into the listener's consciousness, freeing him from any little troubles he has at the moment, elevating him to a higher level of perception through suffering, seeing the world through the eyes of a person, whose sole purpose is to point as many fingers as possible to unjust and power-lusting individuals who make this world not worth living in for a great deal of people. On approaching "Helvete" further, we realize that it has lost its own self, since it finds itself as another being. Secondly, it has thereby sublated that other, for it does not regard the other as essential or real, but sees its own self in the other. Simply put, the album transcends itself, becoming pure negativity, induced by the madness of society.

The lyrics on "Helvete" are surprisingly metaphoric and direct at the same time, very much similar to great lyricists of the Heavy Metal scene, such as NAPALM DEATH's Barney or ROTTEN SOUND's Keijo, which are both best at writing and performing. Even the most trained ear can not comprehend the lyrics on a clear listen, but that's what the booklet is for. The primary funtion of the album are of course not the lyrics, but the musical composition itself. NASUM's songs can be best described as a burst of pure energy, building tension, only to ignite a few seconds after a drum fill or flam. The guitar tone is clearly audible, but of course without any signs of a horrendous overproduction or a hideous soup production. Every riff on this album is as catchy as it is straight and powerful. There are absolute no dull moments of mediocrity or uninspired garbage. Most important of all, there are no breakdown craps or and of that modern "core" rubbish. It's all very manly, direct and ruthless. Easily the best thing since Tschaikovsky or Ravel. If you're into extreme music and you don't know this record, then you have no idea what extreme music actually is.

(Online August 21, 2009)

Aris Stefanov



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