I'll be honest, I haven't listened to anything by this band since their debut, Season of the Dead, in 1987. Maybe it was all the starting and stopping of the band multiple times over the years that caused me to not want to get vested in them. But for whatever reason, I'm glad they are back on my radar since their new album, WhiteWorm Cathedral, is a fantastic slab of old school metal meets death metal.
This album also marks the return of Mirai Kawashima (Sigh) on keyboards. Initially my elitist flag was raised thinking, what does Necrophagia need with keyboards? But I see Mirai has played on 3 prior studio releases, and hearing the fantastic results on this one, I have some catching up on their back catalogue to do. Fear not though, the trademark Necrophagia sound is still present, but with a creepy horror movie feel added to the equation. Killjoy's half vomit half spoken word vocals are still front and center and serve as the calling card here.
For the most part WhiteWorm Cathedral is a mid paced tromp through the graveyard with a nice thick and meaty guitar tone that feels like its oozing blood. Every song is littered with horror movie quotes and never takes itself too seriously. It's a refreshing change in this day and age where you have extreme metal concept albums up the wazoo and an overabundance of 7+ minute songs. You won't have a zillion notes crammed down your throat and the band doesn't try to be the most brutal thing on the block. It knows its place, its comfortable with it and asks you to come along for the journey.
[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]