Denmark’s Shadowspawn don’t attempt to reinvent the death metal wheel on their new album, and what’s more they don’t try and cross-pollinate their music with other genres. What you hear here is undiluted ‘what it says on the tin’ death metal. And I must say I find this straightforward approach very exciting!

If there’s anything I’ve learned from nineteen seasons of Masterchef, it’s that if you choose to cook up a simple dish for the judges, then you’d better do it good. And that’s just what Shadowspawn do on B-ACFF… The semi-title track, Blasphemica, is just about the best straight-up death metal choon you’ll hear all year with it’s jaunty groove and neat phrasing from vocalist Bue T. Jensen, but if that’s even a bit too ‘avant’ for you then how’s about the unforgiving grunt of Color Me Dead? Dripping with gore, equipped with an inhuman kick drum technique from Lukas Meier and boasting a pair of stove-your-head-in guitar tones courtesy of Nicolai Cheung and Oliver Ragnar, this is death metal as it used to be made, way back when the old timers in their Meat Loaf denims used to shake their heads in disbelief that rockers might listen to something so unmusical…

Vanity of the Wicked is positively, erm, Morbid, and none the worse for all that, but for all their old school rigour you never actually feel that what you are listening to is a revisiting of times past on Blasphemica… It takes skill to render a genre so inherently rotten with such apparent freshness, but that’s exactly what Shadowspawn have achieved here. Of course it isn’t easy listening music, but it is death metal that’s easy to listen to, and I very much admire what these blokes have done with this record. Hats off to all concerned!

Blasphemica – Absolution Carved From Flesh releases on October 27th.