Nominon - The Cleansing (Deathgasm Records)
By: Mike Sloan
[7/10] Has it already been a whopping 20 years since Swedenís Nominon was founded? Apparently so, though it doesnít seem that long because the lads arenít one of the most important bands in death metal, Swedish or not. Though the release marks the bandís fifth overall long player and 20th anniversary, donít be conned into believing that Nominon is suddenly one of the most legendary bands that has ever crept from the chilly forests of their homeland (weíre looking at you, guilty PR reps).
Whatever the case may be regarding their legacy or history or what have you, Nominon have always been a reliable band in that they take their time with each release, opting more for quality over quantity. It must be tough hailing from Sweden and playing in a death metal band, though, because regardless of how talented you are, the shadows of the Swedish Big Four (Entombed, Dismember, Grave, Unleashed) will always envelope you and cast you into the darkness. Still, Nominon have maintained a loyal cult-like following and for great cause: their music is rock solid.
They continue the trend of quality with The Cleansing, an album rife with old school death metal. Per the norm, Nominon havenít come close to reinventing any sort of wheel with their ten new tracks of blasphemy, evil, death, etc. Then again, just because Nominon have followed the same exact blueprint over the years without change doesnít mean that The Cleansing is not worthy of any praise. In fact, the album is loaded with catchy moments and even though the majority of the riffs are telegraphed about as badly as a drunkardís punch, they work well and fit nicely where they should.
It might seem as though The Cleansing and/or Nominon is being bashed, but thatís entirely untrue. Itís been written a few times about the ďlegendaryĒ status of the band, which is a bit puzzling because they are rarely, if ever, mentioned when debating the best Sweden has to offer. And though theyíve technically been around since the fetal stages of their countryís death metal scene, they have never been able to stand out in front of the bloated pack. The Cleansing continues that trend because even though itís a solid record, itís just not unique or special enough to really stick out.
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