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Morbid Origin

Norway Country of Origin: Norway

1. Intro
2. Death Reigns
3. Age Of Reprisal
4. Chained To The Void
5. Children Of Demise
6. Extinction
7. Morbid Origin
8. Perennial Slaves
9. Lethal Salvation



Review by Felix on March 23, 2024.

Perhaps I have a wrong perception of black(ened) thrash metal. However, I always thought and still think that it has to score with insidious manginess and snotty devilishness. Inter alia the first two albums of Inculter made me think this way. Now, after five years of silence, the Norwegians have released Morbid Origin and honestly speaking, I was very convinced that they swing the black thrash axes again. But no, this is not the case.

Morbid Origin cannot be blamed for being lukewarm and I can guarantee that it does not present material one can call commercial in any way. This is one half of the truth. The other half is that the band has lost a lot of its vitality and its brutality. Inculter seem to find their mental health with more melodic parts which show up in many songs. Some of them are good, some are still okay, but it is the pattern that hurts the joy of listening the album. I can live with a musical outlaw like 'Perennial Slaves'. It has a kind of alternative feel to it. I admit that it does not smell like teen spirit, but like Nirvana with balls. I would call this dragging number a more or less interesting experiment which lends Inculter an individual note. But I don’t like to experience how a lot of songs with a promising start lose some percent of their power due to fairly lax sequences. They spread like cancer on this album.

This makes me somewhat angry, because Inculter waste their potential. The first regular track 'Death Reigns' holds fantastic riffs, the closer houses a stomping sequence which seems to be inspired by the larger than life introduction of “Hell Awaits” and all the songs in between have great moments in their portfolio as well. But even 'Death Reigns' runs out of breath after 3:30 minutes in view of a powerless guitar line. My dear fellows, please bring back the old days when the opener was a speedy number from the beginning to the end, come hell or high water. I cannot see any sense in this approach, the song would have been a killer without this weak intermezzo. 'Age Of Reprisal' shows the same symptoms. A very attractive gloomy introduction, its riff would had been a perfectly fitting element on albums like “Seasons In The Abyss”, kicks off a slow yet forceful number. Yet the ominous aura crumbles to dust when it comes to a whining guitar line after 3:40 minutes.

The pretty raw vocals, the technical skills of the musicians, the muscular production – all these details give the album a good foundation, but Inculter fail to build a fascinating house on it. Only 'Children Of Demise' (typically enough the shortest number here) is free from dubious excusrsions into softer spheres. So maybe it is too simple, maybe it is true: the band was able to create two great albums with lengths of 35 and 38 minutes, but it is not able yet to run over the challenging distance of 48 minutes with great ease. If they had rejected some of the mild, expressionless parts before they started the recordings, the album would have become the perfect third full-length in their discography. But this did not happen and so we have to face the almost never-ending, repetitive finale of the overlong title track and further questionable sections. The fourth album will show whether they return to their actual strengths or get lost for good in the labyrinth of so-called musical development. Up to now, the stylistic goal of the dudes is unknown.

Rating: 7.1 out of 10

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Review by Michael on December 8, 2023.

So here we finally have the third album Morbid Origin by Norwegian black-thrashers Inculter. Kicking off with a very emotional and melodic intro, they don't take any prisoners with the first song 'Death Reigns'. Produced pretty raw and reminding very much of their countrymen Nekromantheon (sorry Stian, couldn't avoid this one) they spread a lot of old school thrash flair like Slayer in their “Hell Awaits”-era or focusing more on the guitar work, very old German thrash heroes.

But unlike in the past, they also throttle down the tempo in some songs and play some more mid-paced thrash which kicks ass nevertheless. 'Age Of Reprisal' is a slow but pretty catchy one which again reminds of Slayer (“Seasons In The Abyss”) only Remis' vocals sound much rawer than Tom Araya did and also the production is much more archaic. With the title track they have a very rousing one with again a very Slayeresque-riffing. This is old school thrash deluxe. Galloping drums go hand in hand with some very dramatic riffing and vocals here and this is predestined to be a real live killer song. But whoever does not want to be bored with some catchy or mid-tempo tuned stuff, might check 'Children Of Demise' which is a really fast thrash song in the vein of old Sodom or Destruction. I guess they listened a lot to “Agent Orange” and “Persecution Mania” while writing this one. Again the vocals are pretty rough and full of hate and spread this cool raw 80s flair. 'Perennial Slaves' is a full contrast to this all. This is more doom than anything else, very atmospheric and dark and shows a totally different aspect in the compositional skills of Inculter. I guess this is a love it or hate it song and this might be the most controversial one on Morbid Origin.

Finishing with 'Lethal Salvation' this one starts like an applied handbrake before the song explodes. Once again we can hear some very groovy mid-tempo black-thrash with a lot of demanding breaks and some Celtic Frost vibes and my guess would be that Inculter didn't write this album just to please anyone but rather to challenge the listeners. So this project they fully accomplished because it might take some time to acces the album fully but once you're in, you won’t leave it that fast!

Rating: 8 out of 10

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