The Collection - Volume I : Tools of the Trade
SOTD Records
40 minutes

The Collection - Volume I : Tools Of The Trade

Royal Anguish - Shocking the Priest
1)  Deny
2)  Die Inside 
3)  Shocking the Priest 
4)  Rest in Pieces 

Soul of the Savior - Farewell to the Flesh
5)  Intro
6)  Dear Marilyn 
7)  Good and Pure 
8)  Farewell to the Flesh 

Tortured Conscience - Face of God
9)  A New Trend 
10)  Chain the Fallen One 
11)  In Hell 
12)  Internal Torment (Bonus Track) 

No, this isn't the Carcass EP of the same name.  This is another mid-sized schooner in the vast sea of death metal sampler discs.  Three bands with four tracks each.  I'm always up for something new, so come aboard me buckos, and let's set sail through the high seas of grindage.  Arrg...take no prisoners, matey!  Sorry about that.  I promise no more pirate talk

Royal Anguish - These four tracks are taken from their 1992 Shocking The Priest EP back.  I remember getting this EP back in 1993, and playing it nonstop.  I still have the tape somewhere around here, so these remastered tracks are a nice blast from the past.  Old school death metal with a hint of technical finesse.  This sounds nothing like the band does today.  One minute, they're playing some killer 1000 mph riffs and nonstop blast-beats, and the next minute is a nice melodic break...then they shift right back into high gear.  The vocals are shouted instead of growled.  So for all you people who don't like the belch-of-death vocal style, but like music fast and furious, this is sure to please.  Songs include "Deny", "Die Inside", "Shocking The Priest", and "Rest In Pieces".  A personal favorite segment is the opening to "Shocking The Priest" and a quick segment a couple minutes into the track.  It's um...shall we say...very Death influenced.  It sounds like the late Chuck Schuldiner (R.I.P) made a guest appearance on the thing.

Soul Of The Savior - This is first time I've heard of these Texas death metallers.  Not bad.  They have the catchy riffs and the heaviness, but somewhere, something is missing.  If they focused on the slower and heavier segments and built up around that, I'd be a happy camper.  The midpaced material is great.  It's when they start playing the speedy material, do things get kind of ordinary.  Nothing new is brought to the table in that respect, but there are some musical goodies to feast on.  Taken from their Farewell To The Flesh EP, songs include "Intro", "Dear Marilyn", "Good and Pure", and the title track.

Tortured Conscience - Oh yeah, this is what I'm talking about.  Some hyperblasting death grind.  Reminiscent of recent Incantation and Crimson Thorn.  Give these tracks some better production, and we have a Grammy nomination.  OK, maybe not.  The guitars blaze away, while the drums pummel your ass into oblivion.  The vocals are definitely of the death metal variety, but have a little more bite to them.  My only complaint is the short length of the songs.  "A New Trend", "Chain The Fallen", and "In Hell" are barely three minutes, and "Internal Torment" is a little over four minutes.  Just when things get going, the song is over.  I want to hear more of these guys.

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The Collection - Volume I : Tools Of The Trade
SOTD Records

Royal Anguish - Deny
Soul Of The Savior - Farewell To The Flesh
Tortured Conscience - In Hell

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