MORBID — December Moon (review)

MORBID — December Moon album cover Demo · 1987 · Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3/5 ·
"December Moon" is the first demo cassette tape release by Swedish thrash/death/black metal act Morbid. The demo was self-released in 1987. "December Moon" has seen reissues on both vinyl and CD. Morbid was formed under the Scapegoat monicker in 1985, but changed their name to Morbid in 1986. They released a couple of demos before splitting up in 1988. Most of the material available by the band are posthumous releases. They are quite a legendary act and widely considered one of the first and most prolific Swedish death/thrash/black metal acts from those days. They were not only influential on the Swedish extreme metal scene, they also featured quite a few prolific gentlemen in the lineup. guitarist Uffe Cederlund and drummer L-G Petrov would form Nihilist after Morbid disbanded and later Entombed. Lead vocalist "Per Yngve "Dead" Ohlin" joined prolific Norwegian black metal act Mayhem and played with that band until he committed suicide in April 1991.

For such an "old" release, "December Moon" is pretty extreme. It´s basically a very raw sounding and aggressive thrash metal release with heavier more brutal death metal tinged sections and a vocalist that sits close to the black metal camp of singers with his raspy almost whispering mysterious voice. There is no doubt that the earliest releases by the German triumvirate of Sodom, Kreator, and Destruction have made an impact on Morbid, but Bathory and Hellhammer/Celtic Frost should probably be mentioned too. For a demo, the sound quality is actually pretty good although the guitars sound a bit thin. The musicianship is decent too.

I´d characterize "December Moon" as an interesting and very important early extreme metal release from Sweden. It is at the same time a surprisingly enjoyable listen and even though it´s not a release I´ll put on every day, a 3 star (60%) rating is still deserved.
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