Today I want to inform you about this fine platter of violence called “The Ultimate Death”. A search on the internet won’t give you much information, neither will their home page. Niklas Rudolfssen was the main man in DEATHWITCH, as he wrote all the songs and started the band. These days Niklas is most known for his work in RUNEMAGICK, a terrific Doom Metal band. Early in his career he spent time in a band called SACRAMENTUM, a band I know nothing about, but I’m sure some of the readers are familiar with them. While being in SACRAMENTUM he decided he wanted to start a side project and that side project was DEATHWITCH. I know that Niklas has been participating in other bands\projects as well, but RUNEMAGICK and DEATHWITCH are the ones that I care about.
What you’ll get when you put “The Ultimate Death” into your stereo is a dirty mixture of Death\Black and Thrash Metal. Large proportions of the album goes in a half blast, no gravity blasts ala CRYPTOPSY, though as intense as the Canadians. The riffs and disharmonies are played with an admirable intensity, following the drums at every speed. The first half of the record sort of runs over you the first times you listen to it, but give it a few spins to settle. If you listen through the record a couple of times you’ll discover that the record isn’t as one dimensional as some might say. For instance we have The Nekrophilharmonic Orchestra providing us with breathers in the shape of instrumentals such as the intro. Though I’m not a big fan of intro’s and instrumentals I like what I’m hearing here, it doesn’t sound like it’s made without purpose.
The variety in the music itself is assured by Death Metal breakdowns that occur from occasionally to frequently, depending on which song you are listening to. “Pestilent Pandemonium”, the last “real” song on the album, drags the tempo down, giving us an excellent song of sluggish Death Metal. Other highlights are “Monster Perversion” and “Death Machine”. As a whole the record itself is sort of a highlight for those who like extreme music, the first half of “The Ultimate Death” are nothing short of unrelenting. The second half contains more heavy riffs than the first part and is in my opinion the best part. Fortunately I don’t feel like skipping to my favourite songs when I’m listening to “The Ultimate Death”, as the whole of the record holds enough quality to not test ones patience. I’m of course talking to those who listened past the first couple of songs here. It shouldn’t be a problem finding people who think that DEATHWITCH tests more than just their patience. (Online March 2, 2006)