So begins "Turning Black"...A crudely befitting intro to an equally crude album. GRAVE always dwelled in the shadow of ENTOMBED, but I firmly believe they are their own band aside from ENTOMBED. I always hear about the comparisons, and there are many to make, but in the end, isn't it just funnier to listen to a band without thinking about what other band(s) they sound like? This is especially true on "Soulless", GRAVE are an important stepping stone in the evolution of European Death Metal.
Most likely, nothing will drop your pantalones on this album, but if you like your Death Metal groovy, hook-laden and direct, then try some GRAVE on for size. At times the band is melodic, but they are mainly into dirgey, midpaced Death Metal with chugging power-chords and drop-B tuning. They have more in common with BOLT THROWER here actually, if you think about it. Listen to "And Here I Die", and tell me that isn't just quality Death Metal to bang your dreadlocks to (if you have any, I don't). Or check out the impressive title track and say that isn't a perfect Death Metal-version of "Kashmir". Closing track "Scars" rocks and grooves with bestial heaviness, undeniably infectious!
Check this out! I got it because of the killer cover-art, and it did not disappoint. While it may not feather your pillow like the latest offerings from the new breed of Swedish bands, it's a good exercise in acquainting with the roots of it all. Definitely worth the $12 order from Century Media (they're dependable when it comes to stuff in THEIR catalogue).