Morbid Saint celebrates its 40th anniversary with its third release, Swallowed By Hell. The Wisconsin thrash quintet unleash of barrage of riffs, solos and percussion that puts newer bands on notice. The opening track, “Rise From The Ashes”, is aptly titled with its manic opening of double bass drums and chainsaw guitars. The title track continues the momentum with a haunting vocal prelude before the speed attack commences. Drummer Lee Reynolds transitions from off kilter drum patterns to full on speed while guitarists Jay Visser and Jim Fergades throw out some nasty riffs.
“Bloody Floors” opens with a bass line that segues into a mid-tempo that speeds up yet again with pulverizing drums. “Fear Incarnate” has a sick syncopated guitar/drum intro with some interesting rhythm changes that keeps listeners on their toes. The band showcases a slight tinge of prog on “F*ck Them All” due to its length and rhythm changes. There are no keyboards, acoustic guitars or symphonic samples here. It is a pugnacious, aggressive metal number designed to start a mosh pit. “Pine Tuxedo” has a slow-fast tempo that accompanied by chunky riffs that could crack pavement. “Psychosis” rightly closes Swallowed as a five-and-a-half minute no frills thrash number. The double-time galloping riffs and bass drums are lockstep as Pat Lind screams about losing his sanity.
Swallowed By Hell succeeds by trimming the fat and staying on point. The album’s 10 tracks range from three-and-a-half to five-and-a-half minutes with a total length of 47 minutes. The songwriting is dynamic with “Burn Pit” as arguably the weakest track on the album. The musicianship is superb as the band plays tight, fast and aggressive. Producer Chris Wisco did an excellent job on this record. The sound is clear and loud which accentuates the ferocity of the tracks.
Morbid Saint shows that the old school reigns supreme on Swallowed By Hell. The songs are brutal, yet cohesive and will appease many a thrash metal fan. It is only February, yet Swallowed is already a contender for metal album of the year. This is a must listen.
Check out the band’s website here: https://morbidsaint.com/