World Without God reviews
__Ziltoid__ on July 11th, 2011
Top Tier Finndeath
Today, I present to you one of my personal favorite Finnish death metal albums, Convulse’s World Without God. Released way back in 1992, this doozy got a bit more attention in 2010 when Relapse gave it a re-release with some additional content in the form of demos and stuff. While the 2010 version is loud and compressed, the original had shit production as well, so it’s not like they killed a classic by remastering it, and the additional content is great for collectors. Let’s put it this way, the remaster job is nowhere near as awful as the hack job that Dan Swano did to Molested’s Blod-Draum. That’s basically my comparison point for remasters these days. So back on topic, this shit is awesome! What we have here is some guttural, murky, and somewhat doomy death metal that incorporates every aspect of the Finnish sound that you know and love.
I love generic, cheesy, pretentious, over-the-top synth intros. Honestly, as horribly fake and lame as they sound, they represent an attempt at something that might have passed as “epic,” and I like that ambition. However, most of them end up being like bad horror movies–sure, you love them and cherish their place in society, but you can acknowledge that they’re awful. That’s what we get here with the cleverly titled ‘Intro.’ As ill-fitting as it is, I always dig this kind of stuff for some morbid reason that I can’t quite pick out.
Anyway, once the actual death metal starts, we’re presented with some immediate riffwork that clarifies that this is, in fact, a death metal album with the first track, ‘World Without God.’ Not only that, but we’re quickly exposed to the varying speeds that convulse implements. While their most memorable riffs are the slow ones, they can easily adapt and write some very enjoyable fast-paced sections as well. Still, I find that Convulse is at their best in the slow sections. Just listen to the short bit starting at 1:38. Sure, it’s a very small segment of an oft-changing song, but that little lead melody, in my opinion, adds a lot of definition the the song, giving what is otherwise one of Convulse’s faster songs a slb of that doomy touch that they’re so good at utilizing. The speed contrasts are, in my mind, what make this such a good song.
‘Blasphemous Verses’ is my favorite song here, with that drum intro that feels so vacant that it leaves you in anticipation of what’s going to happen next. Sure, it’s a short intro, but I love the effect it has on the rest of the song. Oh, and I can’t forget the great riffing throughout this song, which is full of the Finnish goodness that we’ve come to know. The 2:26 mark brings my favorite slow section of the album, which consists of the sickeningly doom-laden riff and a harmonized version of it. That riff gets me every time, and I absolutely love the fast section afterward. As you see, speed contrast is one of the key aspects of Convulse’s sound, and they do a damn good job of implementing it well.
To me, this is a very versatile death metal album. Between the speed changes and riff changes, World Without God dances around our image of what death metal should be, simultaneously sticking to the rules, while also being a bit adventurous on its own. To some, this may sound like any other death metal album. Well, I’ll just say that I kindly disagree. Everything here melds together in a way that other albums just don’t. This overall sounds creates an amorphous, murky atmosphere that evokes darker imagery than most death metal albums of this time. Every layer here has its unique role, but the convergence of the layers is what makes this a top-tier Finnish death metal album, for in that regard, it stands near the top of the pack.
Written for http://thenumberoftheblog.com/
dismember_marcin on July 4th, 2011
Blasphemous death metal
I know that there are many maniacs who hate seeing some old albums re-released, but I must say if any old LPs were about to be re-released, this full length was definitely one of the most awaited. Let's be honest, the prices of the original, difficult to find, pressing of "World Without God" LP were sometimes ridiculous, reaching over 100 euros on Ebay! So it was about time, when someone takes the album into XXI century and release it again. Relapse did that (right after they've done brilliant job with exhumating Nirvana 2002), on beautiful vinyl as well as CD, adding "Resuscitation of Evilness" demo as a bonus, what makes it even more worthy piece of wax for the death metal worshipers. Alltogether there are 14 old school death metal tracks on the vinyl (16 on CD)! What a damn feast!
I hope I don't need to introduce Convulse to you, as it was one of the leading bands on the Finnish scene. It's a shame that for so many years this name didn't appear in the underground press, but luckily we can listen to their legacy and believe me, "World Without God" is one of the best Finnish LPs, one which equals "Nepenthe" or "Slumber of the Sullen Eyes" easily! The music on "World Without God" is simply brutal. It's midpaced, not overly complicated death metal, which takes the equal influences from their Finnish companions, as well as bands like Grave and other Swedish bands, and occassionaly goes even further, into American legends like Incantation. The dark horror atmosphere, smell of the rotten corpses... You can feel it in every minute of this album and that's something I always look for in the death metal. The riffs are thick and song structures not overly complicated, this LP is straigh forward slaughtering piece, an axe that is about to smash your head with some heavy riffing and dense atmosphere. Occassionally Convulse picks up some more harmonic, melodic riffs, just to diversify their music a little, and so in these fragments they may remind you few Swedish bands ("False Religion" with a cool acoustic interruption in the midle of the song, "Blasphemous Verses", etc), but generally I think Convulse is more brutal than most of their Scandinavian friends, but if think of such bands as early Grave, Crematory, then you may get the vision... And Rami's vocals... Man, of course it's anything like Demilich or Disgrace even, but the guy also had amazing guttural vokills.
As I already said, "World Without God" re-release comes with the "Resuscitation of Evilness" demo and that's great bonus. Although all the demo songs are re-recorded on the full length, I always love to listen to band's early recordings, if it's a demo or EP, I don't care, but it's cool to hear band's development and compare the demo with the album. The demo production is much rawer and filthy of course, but the songs already had that power and the guys had the skills to skin you alive.
As for the other things concerning the album, "World Without God" comes with one of my favorite front covers of that time and I also must say that Convulse had some really cool lyrics. Unlike many other death metal bands, which wrote bullshit non death metal lyrics, Convulse had strong atrichristian influence in their texts, with such lyrics like "World Without God", "Blasphemous Verses", "False Religion". There're also some more gore oriented texts, "Putrid Intercourse" and "Incantation of Restoration" for instance... And example? Here we go:
"...Knock on the doors and violate domestic peace
Sell the salvation and I spit against your faces
Why do you have to intrude with your fuckin' Jesus books
It's against my views and injures my soul
Your faith is weak and only a deception
The holy bible proves against itself
Your faith is your opinion about religion
But real believer believes always himself..."
How sweet. Really there are many things you should kill for this album, it's a must have in your collection, trust me!
ThrashManiacAYD on February 2nd, 2010
Convulse - World Without God
Like Nirvana 2002, Atheist and others before them the darlings at Relapse Records have seen fit to dust down the archives of ancient death metal, look under the section 'MIA' and pull out a record they believed was many years overdue a further inspection to see if death metal would have benefitted from their continued existence after the slaughter of the metal masses in the mid 90's. This time it's Finnish brutal death metallers Convulse and their 1992 debut LP "World Without God".
Having just worked through today's modern brutal assault in the shape of Abraxas, Convulse can be seen as the 1992 equivalent of such a style: ultra guttural vocals courtesy of Rami Jämsä; drums that sound as drums are meant to sound when being hit hard and fast; and predominantly simple yet dark riffs that deviate between medium and fast, for the time. All in all the final outcome is in the Incantation school of death metal: not for beginners or the faint of heart. Aside from the almost obligatory classically sampled intro (think Kreator's "Pleasure to Kill") I regret to report that we have nothing else approaching 'nice' in what comes to follow. "Putrid Intercourse" begins ala old Morbid Angel; "Resuscitation of Evilness" has that feeling of being run over very painfully by something very heavy in true Bolt Thrower style; "Incantation of Restoration" just feels like being beaten up by a particular vicious bastard and in "False Religion" Convulse mix up the speed more pertinently than elsewhere in such a fashion I wouldn't be surprised if Incantation took considerable influence from these guys in the tape-trading days of yore.
The sound is befitting the era of the time, again in contrast to that of the clinically-brutal assault of Abraxas, with an unremittingly dense and claustrophobic tone generated from the merciless grunts of Jämsä and his cohorts' simple down-tuned riffing. The key segments of the music are there for all to hear and while the lack of subtlety and clarity might be off-putting to some, I find this brand of DM much closer to the genre's rotten heart and thus can find genuine enjoyment in a record this proudly solid.
Concluded by the inclusion of the band's 1990 demo "Resuscitation of Evilness" (boasting a grindier, less beefy guitar sound) and two live tracks (including a cover of Venom's "Countess Bathory") one senses Relapse have dug up another forgotten record that while not ground-breaking for it's style in 1992 certainly benefits from some added historical and nostalgic value nearly 20 years later in what is now a very different world for such primitive death metal.
Originally written for www.Rockfreaks.net
dnelson on June 12th, 2008
An unexpected finnish gem.
Amidst the Finnish scourge of melodic black metal faggotry emerges a band so heavy, and so crushing, I recommend that you encase your balls in titanium lest you want them utterly flattened by this mammoth of a death metal album. Ever been strapped on your back to a flat surface with your neck arched backwards, head upside down then facefucked into oblivion? No!? Prepare for pain.
The music rolls along in an infectious fashion like Cianide, yet is both faster and slower in places. Blasts (with real drums mind you, no triggers to be found here) accompanying fitting tremolo passages are present but not dominant. These root notes are often paired up with their corresponding fifths in order to build tension, creating those boiling, armhair-raising moments before the impending climax that so many bands fail to understand or employ. The lower tremolo notes are often buried in their own reverb, which conjures a comparison to Onwards to Golgotha type of production, but the similarities are more than just skin-deep. Slow, crushing Incantation style doomage permeates the music of Convulse, working their subtle half-whole/whole-half diminished stylings to pound the listener ever deeper into the grave. Not only this, but also very much alive are the Mournful Congregation-esque droning harmonies every now and then, except they are utilized in a fashion that emphasizes the musical diversity of this album. We even hear an acoustic guitar in the track False Religion and some mood-enchancing keys in Godless Truth, but tarry not should the worthy listener, for the homo-erotic tendencies of bands like Opeth do not rear their ugly heads. Even the vocals reek of Craig Pillard influence, as the vocalist bellows verses detailing the denial of “God” and occasionally some sort of anatomically obscene act here or there. In this, I feel the music is more atheistic or at least Satanic in a nihilistic sort of way, which I prefer over Deicide-style BLARGH I HEART SATAN anyway.
Do I have any complaints regarding this album? There is nothing to be found I think, that detracts from the full potential of Old School Death Metal in any kind of substantial manner to be heard here. However, while the recording process sounds damn near perfect, especially given the time frame, the mixing is obviously amateurish. Instruments fade in and out, while being muffled beneath the vocals in a very obvious and almost annoying manner at times. But fuck that, why should mixing be important to death metal? For this I can only justify the slightest of punishments. I do feel the bass guitar was a little short-changed here, as I’m partial to the pounding bass tendencies of Autopsy and the like, but such production is standard fare for much death metal from this time period due to the nature of the recording process employed. The final criticism I can muster against this album is that it utilizes the type of song writing one would define as “solid” instead of “defining” or “revolutionary”; but for a death fiend like me, satiating the nihilistic hunger of old school death is more than enough. We shall leave experiments to Phlebomotmized and Nocturnus yet revel in bands like Convulse and God Macabre all the same, indulging in each to equal degrees despite their artistic differences.
I recommend this album to every true death metal fan out there, for as it seems to us that just when all other paths have been walked, a gem reveals itself and demands our attention as a new and exciting discovery. Convulse is a band that certainly deserves more recognition in the scene, and I feel that as the internet propagates this album across the metal world, Convulse will receive their due recognition, for better or worse. Ballcrushing doom-tinged midpaced old school death metal for the ages.
Perplexed_Sjel on December 6th, 2007
World Without Convulse.
I was reading up about old school death metal bands that have long since been forgotten and I came across Convulse, a Finnish band who issued two full-lengths during their reign of brutality. 'World Without God' is the debut and the full-length which I wish to focus entirely on. I've not actually heard the second record, so it would be impossible for me to make any sort of comparisons and to an extent, I wish to put Convulse in their own league because i've never really enjoyed death metal, particularly old school death metal, but I vastly enjoyed 'World Without God'.
It's a fairly simplistic record to review. To sum it up neatly, this is brutal. Convulse aim to unleash brutality not only across Scandinavia, but across the world with this record and in my opinion, they managed it. 'World Without God' only seemed to be recognised by a few people, but those who choose to acknowledge it's existence were extremely overjoyed in doing so. Convulse are one of those bands that you cannot help but become entranced by. The way in which Convulse stick bass out there, in the open for all to see and hear, is astounding. Bass is an important element of music, but is often overlooked because lead guitars have more of a free role when it comes to creativity. 'World Without God' showcases the fact that bass can be pivotal. The bass on this album doesn't take centre stage, but it is important to the record on the whole. It's continuously plugging away in the background, with a very raw sound. I believe the production has much to do with the sound of the record overall. It's somewhat dank. It's not incredibly easy to listen to every instrument with your full attention because the production is somewhat murky, with a dark cynicism hanging in the air, but this adds to the charms. The production isn't often a factor with modern day death metal. It's clean and everything can be appreciated accordingly, but old school bands like it with a touch of darkness.
This darkness is something that prevails throughout. You can feel the encroaching darkness with every pound of the drum and it's an amazing feeling. You could realistically imagine 'World Without God' being on the soundtrack to a classic slasher horror flick about a man who mutilates his victims and devours their bodies. Convulse, in a sense, do that with their music. Those pounding relentless drums work away at your body, offering a punch with every hit and the powerful riffs slash you open again and again, blood seeping from your body but you don't care. The pain of it is good. The excellent use of distortion pedals cannot go unnoticed. From time to time we're offered with a slice of variety from the normal unrelenting sound. A slower passage which allows the dynamism and sheer aggressive tendencies to ease down until we're knocked back down by the effective underlying bass and those smooth riffs.
'World Without God' has one flaw. It can sound quite similar in places. Repetition of moods and soundscapes isn't necessarily a bad thing though. It can enhance the music on occasions, but you feel that death metal fans will be looking for constant change and innovation. Solid release. A world without Convulse just wouldn't be the same.
sdaniel on November 25th, 2007
This is my first review for Metal Archives, and I thought I'd start with a review of one of my all time favorite albums, Convulse's "World Without God".
Not many people are familar with this finnish band. Released by the cult label Thrash Records, WWG achieved legendary status among underground circles.
The sound is old-school scandinavian death metal, with the typical dark downtuned guitar tone made famous by Entombed, Dismember etc. But this is way above average, set apart from the pack by it's tremendous overall quality. The riffs are just unbelievably heavy! And have the crushing force of a tank, pulverizing every inch of your body. The whole atmosphere and feeling of the album is extremely dark and doomy.
Also, all of the songs are highlights. Not one track is mediocre, they're all simply exceptional. From the main riff in the first song, to the acoustic part in "False Religion".
If you're looking for quality death metal, look no further. You really can't go wrong with old-school finnish death metal, as well as anything on the Thrash Records roster . Forget Gothenburg's melodic bullshit, Nile's gay-ass wannabe-egypyian chants and Cannibal Corpse's mindless brutality, this is true death metal.
TortureFiend on July 5th, 2007
the definition of putrid finnish death!
This is without a doubt, one of the most brutal scandinavian releases of the early 90s scene... The sound on this record is eerie and very dark, with the trademark dirty finnish guitar sound typical of the time. Think Demigod on Steroids... thats a pretty good comparison of what youre in for with this LP!! The brutality level on here is enough to give old GRAVE a run for its money, with deep, powerful vocals (with just a hint of reverb to keep with the eerie sound...) crushing guitars and pounding non-triggered drums... Of course there is a bit of evil scandinavian melody thrown in here and there for good mix as one would expect, but overall this record is a lesson in barbarity and utter depravity! The fact that this album is/was only available on vinyl LP format only contributes to the sick raw sound of this recording.... Everything about this record just reeks of evilness... from the awesome cover artwork, to the music, to the only-available-on-LP "cult" status its achieved, this is simply another must-own album from the great THRASH RECORDS catalog (R.I.P) that every self-respecting scan-DM maniac should have in their collection!
Dont hold out for an official CD re-release of the record, as members of the band have said they will not consider a re-release without hearing back from Thrash Records, who still own the masters... Unfortunately the label has been LONG dead, and chances of a reply are very slim these days! Bite the bullet and search for the LP online!
World Without God track list
|2||World Without God||04:55|
|4||Incantation of Restoration||03:45|
|7||Resuscitation of Evilness||03:45|
|10||Powerstruggle of Belief||04:01|
World Without God lineup
|Jani Kuhanen (R.I.P. 1992)||Guitars|
|Rami Jämsä||Vocals, Guitars (lead)|