MOLDER "Engrossed In Decay"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Climbing from the stinking sewers of Joliet, IL, in the shadow of Chicago we have MOLDER, crusaders for the purity of slimy and repulsive death metal. These guys have been making a steady ascent for the last few years and "Engrossed In Decay" will introduce them to the wider world.

Having seen them play live a few months back at the Blades of Steel festival, I know what to expect. And anybody who checks out the icky cover art will as well. MOLDER make no pretense of trying anything new in the death metal realm...they just want to drown you in thick, bludgeoning riffs. There's a lot of AUTOPSY worship to be found here, along with a certain kind of stripped down, low tuned feel common to Chicago area bands like CARDIAC ARREST and CIANIDE. Nothing technical here...just good old sickness.

A lot of tracks have a galloping feel that almost forces your head to bang, leavened with doomier bits and tortured cat-strangling guitar solos. Aaron Pantke's tormented vocals are in the Martin van Drunen style, which fits the gory lyrics to a bloody T. Quality is pretty uniform throughout this festering opus, but my favorite tracks presently are the title track, "Chemically Dissolved", "Ghastly Mutations" and the soothing ballad "Decaying Embryos".

Looks like Chicago area has got itself another band to reckon with...