ALBUM REVIEW: Mental Disaster – ‘The Repulsive Abomination’

Words by Carly Gibbs

Despite sounding like a description of my current mindset amidst all of this Coronavirus craziness, Mental Disaster, if you don’t already know, is actually a savage death metal band from the Bible Belt in Norway.  Without any prior knowledge you might think that by living in the Bible Belt in a city called Kristians would be conducive to creating music that would placate the good Lord.  Wrong!  There ain’t nothin’ holy about Mental Disaster and their third full length album ‘The Repulsive Abomination’.

The band play their own brand of punishing, thrash laden death metal and have seen success with their previous releases ‘Demon Speak’ (2013) and ‘Raping the Symbol of Humanity’ (2016).  ‘The Repulsive Abomination’ is set to be their biggest album yet, spruiking 100% brutality and there is literally no other way that it should be listened to other than at ear drum bursting, vomit inducing levels. 

The album tears open with the title track, cracking the earth to expose the scorched path in which to follow down into the depths of the 33 minute demonic offering.  Straight off the mark it has exactly what I’m looking for.  Lightening picking, machine-gun drumming, snarling vocals and plenty of blasphemous bounce and grit.  20 seconds in and I’m already nodding my head.

Disciples of Innocence starts off with that same heavy bounce as The Repulsive Abomination but quickly takes a thrashy turn.  These parts can be likened to the almighty Slayer and their faster tempo tracks like Angel of Death.   At around 2 minutes 39 you are pummelled with a wall of sound.  Olsen’s steel legs hammering the double kick and smashing that snare.  I’m not sure if Lindeland performs both the higher screams as well as the deep guttural growls but I love how they sound like they are at war but simultaneously working together to front the battering ram. 

Both High Priest of Doom and Bow to the Blade are bloodthirsty tracks and I imagine they would be a solid sledge to the face when they play them live.  The same can be said about Sword of Vengeance and Testify and Repent.  The latter having a chorus that is super chant-worthy.  I envisage the crowd whipped into a powerful, primal frenzy which is exactly what you want at a metal gig, right?  I know that’s what I want. 

Apart from the thematic similarities, the record bears some musical similarities to Deicide which is not surprising as they cite them as one of their influences.  Morbid Angel get a look in as well as At The Gates in certain parts.

Sometimes, towards the end of an album the momentum and interest can wane a little but this is not the case with ‘The Repulsive Abomination’.  I actually think that Mauled Beyond Belief and Berserker Rage Unfold are two of my favourite tracks on the album.  Actually, now that I think of it, the last three tracks are the tracks I enjoy the most.  Sapiens So Pure, the closing track, is foreboding and vicious yet still has a ton of melody without taking away from that dark trench of sound.  Orstad’s bass and Sorensen on guitar do a perfect job of creating this tension and deliver brutal riffs and menacing atmosphere. 

Now, I don’t profess to know a whole lot about the metal scene in Kristiansand, it would be a pretty niche specialisation for a girl from the Sunshine Coast, but it seems that Mental Disaster are carving a substantial hole in the death metal scene there.  Just like their mates in Blood Red Throne they are standing on their own and moving away from the corpse paint of the black metal scene that is so infamously Norwegian.  For any fan of death, thrash or even black metal, this album has something that will no doubt pique your interest and if you are like me, hold it and keep it entertained throughout. 

‘The Repulsive Abomination’ is out now streaming on the usual sites.  If you are after a hard copy of the CD for your collection it’s released on the 10th of April and you can pre-order it HERE

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