AUTOPSY — 1987 Demo (review)

AUTOPSY — 1987 Demo album cover Demo · 1987 · Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
"1987 demo" is the first demo release by US, California based death metal act Autopsy. The demo was independently released in December 1987. Autopsy was formed in August 1987 after drummer/lead vocalist Chris Reifert left Death and teamed up with guitarist Eric Cutler and bassist Eric Eigard. After recording Death´s debut album "Scream Bloody Gore" (May 1987, Combat Records), Chuck Schuldiner wanted to move back to his native Florida, but Reifert was reluctant to move from California to Florida. He had done it once when Death unsucessfully recorded the first version of "Scream Bloody Gore" and he felt uncomfortable in the humid Florida heat. Hence Reifert´s departure from Death and the birth of Autopsy.

"1987 demo" features four tracks and a total playing time of 13:16 minutes. "Embalmed" and "Stillborn" would be re-recorded and included on Autopsy´s debut full-length studio album "Severed Survival" (April 1989, Peaceville Records), while "Human Genocide" and "Mauled to Death" were at the time exclusive to this release. The former would however be re-recorded and included on the 2010 "The Tomb Within" EP while the latter would be re-recorded and released as a flexi-disc single and given away with Decibel Magazine no. 88, Feb. 2012. Both were subsequently included on the February 2012 "All Tomorrow's Funerals" (Peaceville Records) compilation album. Before that the original demo versions were made available on the 2000 "Ridden with Disease" (Necroharmonic Productions) compilation album and the 2010 "Awakened by Gore" (Nuclear War Now! Productions) compilation album.

Stylistically the material is old school thrash oriented death metal to the bone and listeners who enjoy "Scream Bloody Gore" should find a lot to like here. While the tracks are pretty simple, they are both catchy, brutal, powerful, and effective old school death metal. Reifert´s vocals are slightly higher pitched than they would become just a year or two down the line, but they are still pretty sick and deranged growling/screaming. The tracks are relatively varied and features both fast sections, mid-paced heavy sections, and slow and doomy sections.

The demo is well produced featuring a raw, but still detailed and powerful sounding production job. Considering that this is a late 1987 extreme metal demo, I´d say it´s exceptionally well produced. Autopsy had only existed for five months at the time of recording this demo and I assure you it doesn´t sound like it. This is quite the brilliant demo and a 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.
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