(This is Todd Manning‘s review of the new album by the SoCal band Swampbeast, which was released in mid-February by Translation Loss Records.)
Outsiders may not realize that there are swamps in Los Angeles, but Death Metal trio Swampbeast have arrived to show us what kind of madness lurks in those fetid waters. Their debut, Seven Evils Spawned from Seven Heads, just issued on Translations Lost Records, is a nightmarish journey of blackened Death Metal that threatens to drown the listener in a miasma of filth.
While not exactly revolutionizing their chosen genre, Swampbeast burst out the gates with a sound of their own, surprisingly well-developed given their lack of history. The hammering assault of opener “Orcs Anvil” echoes the bludgeoning of Entombed’s Left Hand Path, but they also check some Morbid Angel and Black Metal boxes as well. Second track, “The Blind God” adds the subterranean mystique of Portal into the mix to great effect. While the speed of the opener remains, a great deal of evil atmosphere works its way in.