ALBUM REVIEW: Heavydeath ‘Eternal Sleepwalker’


‘Eternal Sleepwalker’
Svart Records
(Released: March 2015)

Slower than a mountain and twice as heavy, this Swedish trio deliver immensely powerful death-doom with a hammer in one hand and a scalpel in the other. For all its bone-snapping muscle, ‘Eternal Sleepwalker’ is also sharp, cutting and cruel. This band does not simply want to flatten you like roadkill; they want to scrape you off the tarmac and carve you open.

Recorded in just two days, this raw, rumbling debut is no-frills, testicle-deflating metal of ultimate heaviness. The band unleash a volley of understated, crawling riffs, and with each sickening chord another fragment of your soul breaks off and dies. Even in the bleakest moments of repetition and drone (which come a little too frequently) the energy never wanes, the passion never fades.

Heavydeath show what can be achieved with a solitary, raging guitar and a whole heap of inspiration. And coursing through the veins of the music is a charismatic vocal performance that lifts the songs to heavenly reaches, and the drives them down to hellish shadow. Vocals and guitars both come courtesy of Nicklas Rudolfsson (ex-Runemagick), with Johan Bäckman cracking floors with his bass and Daniel Moilanen beating the holy crap out of his drums.

There is no shortage of originality on display on this album, and Heavydeath wield their weaponry with masterful skill and imagination. This is the album that those excited by the band’s extremely promising 2014 demos had prayed for. Formed in 2009, the Swedish outfit has almost fallen apart a few times through various complications, and they only begin playing live shows this year. But if they can replicate the alluring ugliness of this recording, the gigs should be worth the wait.

Heavydeath have a distinctive sound and capture a unique mood with their music. ‘Eternal Sleepwalker’ is blessed with resounding love and seething hate in equal measure, and quality in abundance.


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