Oct 262011

Lasse Pyykkö is one busy Finn. According to Metal Archives, he’s a vocalist, guitarist, bassist, and/or keyboardist for the following active bands: Phlegethon, Vacant Coffin, Hooded Menace, Swarming, and Ruinebell, in addition to being involved in the past with Acid Witch, Shrouded, and Sarnath (and many other bands). But what hooked our interest for purposes of this post was his one-man project called Claws, which he started in 2008 in an effort to recapture the style of death metal embodied by old-school bands such as Crematory, Nihilist, and Incantation.

The Claws discography consists of one album (Absorbed in the Nethervoid – 2009), one EP (The Funeral Barge – 2009), and a split released late last month with Grave Wax titled Pestilent Formation. I got turned onto Claws by NCS reader Utmu, who sent me a link to a YouTube clip for the song “Macabre Manifestations”, which appears on the Nethervoid album. I knew I was going to like this after about 5 seconds. It’s raw, ugly, buzzed-to-the-max, and smells like the crypt:

[audio:https://www.nocleansinging.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/06-Macabre-Manifestations.mp3|titles=Claws – Macabre Manifestations]

That song was all it took to send me searching for more music. I found the Pestilent Formation split and listened to the two Claws tracks on that release. (more after the jump . . .)

Man, this is beautifully grisly music: killer riffs set to maximum distortion, boiling solos, and vocals that echo from deep in a corpse-strewn abyss. Lasse Pyykkö has definitely got a feel for this style of horror-show death metal.

There’s more to like about that Pestilent Formation split, too, namely, Grave Wax.  Grave Wax is a collaborative effort between Kam Lee (Death, Massacre, Bone Gnawer), Brian Forman (Unburied) and the Riddick twins, Mark and Mike (Excrescent, Yamatu, Fetid Zombie). The two Grave Wax tracks on the split also channel old-school death metal, though more in the vein of early 90’s American bands such as Obituary, and with a somewhat sharper production than the filthy sound on the Claws tracks. Both songs are wonderful.

If you’re a fan of old-school death metal from either side of the Atlantic, this is a terrific split. You can stream the whole thing here:


You can order the music from all of Lasse Pyykkö’s projects, including the Claws releases and the new split, by visiting this web page:


I also found the Pestilent Formation split for sale as a download at Klicktrack.

Claw’s MySpace page is here.

The Grave Wax facebook page is here.

  21 Responses to “CLAWS”

  1. Nice find. Love Hooded Menace and this sounds quite groovy as well 🙂

  2. Can’t help but notice these guys are affiliated with Horror Pain Gore Death Productions… I highly recommend another HPGD alum, Druid Lord:


    Little more olde schoole than these offerings, I’ll admit, but still worthy of a listen. Doesn’t hurt that they’re local boys. And since I know how much you all love me, here’s a review of their album I did for a local zine:


    I can’t say much about the nickname…the lovely lass who runs the zine gave it to me, and who am I to argue?

  3. I’m not a big fan of a lot of the old school death metal bands/albums, so it always surprises me just how much I do like newer bands who emulate the sound. I’m guessing it has something to do with production quality. I know a lot of people really like the older production with its rawness (like a cowboy on the trail wearing nothing but crotchless chaps), but I prefer more modern production. Like a shiny attack vibrator.

  4. Love Claws..anything Lasse Pyykkö is involved with always seems to be badass. Cant say the same for Grave Wax…man they just sound awful to me

  5. I really need to get more into this kind of music. I’ve listened to Hooded Menace before and really enjoyed it, and this is pretty good, too. But that’s been the extent of my exposure.

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