Dismember was my very first death metal band. When I first heard their debut album, Like An Ever Flowing Stream, back in 1992, I was horrified, repelled, and yet strangely fascinated. I remember I bought the tape out of a cut-out bin largely as a joke, because the photo of the band on the back of the cassette case was ludicrous–a bunch of guys posing shirtless, in bullet belts, covered in pig’s blood. The more I listened to it, though, the deeper I got into its beautiful and complex rhythms. From then on I was hooked on death metal.

“Dismembered” comes from their 1991 debut, and it’s Swedish early-90s death metal at its best: crunchy, brutal and punishing. You can tell Swedish death metal from Florida death metal (like Morbid Angel) because the Swedish version sounds “dry,” where Florida death metal sounds “wet” or “sludgey.” These terms may not mean anything to a non-metalhead, but anyone versed in the genre will know instantly what you’re talking about.

Dismember was around since 1988, and sadly broke up in 2011 after eight albums and a scattering of EPs and other minor releases. I had the pleasure of seeing them live at Wacken Open Air in 2002, and also chatting briefly with them in the press tent. Cool guys!

Have a good weekend. Shabbat Shalom! \m/