Part of the last vanguard of the Swedish death metal movement Centinex represent a consolidation of knowledge and a search for fusion of the past of melodic death metal with the future of savage and feral music.
flag of Sweden Centinex - Malleus Maleficarum (1995)
Malleus Maleficarum
Wild Rags
Production: Characteristic production in the electrofuzz style of Sunlight studio situated in a comfortingly cloaked background which absorbs excess sound defines the technical aspects of this sound conveyance in a manner similar to classic American death metal excepting the trademark distortion.

Review: Although not entirely unknown in terms of the basic melodies herein used, the music of Centinex captures the Swedish sound a generation later by absorbing the essence of melody encased in a compelling and essentially connecting rhythm; what makes this band exceptional is their ability to write in the margins the essence of the song, connecting a fusion of riffs and connective structures that are derived from the canon of an evolving genre with each other through a primal dependence on rhythm, a force that accents the various melodies around central emphatic points and thereby neatly joins otherwise disjointedly complex songs.

Most of the phrases used in this music focus around one or two point contrasting resolutions, and break their tension with rhythmically expanding melody in the style of older Belial, but underneath that structural simplicity is a complicated language of motion which generates a systematics of reduction that communicates the frenetic energy and relentless morbid destruction which nourishes the power in death metal. Although most of the riffs on this album are simple and often remind the listener of other pieces of metalwork from history, their accumulation with nihilistic abandon and yet romantic yearnings for melodic unification present a desolate picture which hints at the potential it conceals.


1. Upon the Ancient Ground
2. Dark Visions
3. Sorrow of the Burning Wasteland
4. Transcent of the Dark Chaos
5. Thorns of Desolation
6. Eternal Lies
7. At the Everlasting End
Length: 35:36

centinex malleus maleficarum 1995
Copyright © 1995 Wild Rags

A major discordance is the use of extremely rock n roll pentatonic soloing throughout the album to the degree of guitar fireworks and bluesy note-bending flamboyance one might expect from a Judas Priest tribute band, melted into the high speed rippling of tonal flare that is death metal soloing, but even this is well articulated in a work by a band who know how to assemble songs better than they know how to invent them. Their skill is sometimes disconcerting considering the prevalence of two-note variations on famous Swedish death metal riffs that populate this album but given its affective coherence in composition the same skill conveys a basic intelligence to the assembly here that makes it enjoyable.

Half of the drumming comes courtesy of a sequencer with drum samples, but otherwise musicianship is flawless and even practiced in its flair which is not quite overaccomplished but still competent and gaining confidence in its own belief in its articulation. For those who appreciate vocals, the low-end rumbling and cadenced enunciation here is enough to satisfy a feast of lyrical aggression. What holds this album together however is the guitar work and its ability to speak a presence of mind despite its leanings toward the predictable, filling spaces in the known with the pure art of morbid ambiguity.

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