Pungent Stench - _Praise the Names of the Musical Assassins_
(Nuclear Blast, 1998)
by: Adam Wasylyk (
I've always liked Pungent Stench, who to me were one of the best death metal bands to combine brutality (both musically and visually) with groove. _PtNotMA_ is comprised of hard-to-find, rare and compilation tracks to serve almost as a "best of," a quality remembrance to one of Nuclear Blast's better bands. Starting out with five tracks which appeared on a split LP with fellow N.B. band Disharmonic Orchestra, these tracks alone are worth the price of this CD (special packaging and all) due to the sheer aggression and violence they spew forth. It's music to kill or torture someone to. Also worthy of mention are tracks from Pungent Stench's 7" _Extreme Deformity_, three tracks that appeared on different compilations (the better ones being _Death Is Just the Beginning 2_'s "Daddy Cruel" and _DIJtB 3_'s "Tony"). Almost 2/3's into the album, the listener is confronted with "Madcatmachopsychoromantik", a complete turnabout from the prior 13 tracks, featuring crooning with a backdrop which could resemble (well, at least the first half of the song) a mangled, acid drenched metal version of something Quebec pop star Mitsou would create! When the confusion subsides, we are treated to five remaining tracks that appeared on a rehearsal demo the band did in 1988. Just saying "rehearsal demo" should testify to their recording quality, but it's a great chance to see Pungent's beginnings as a band and to hear how the band have evolved over the years. As mentioned earlier, the CD comes in special packaging which consists of a black box which holds the CD and a 24-page booklet containing all of Pungent Stench's releases (rare and all), live shows and photos of the band that were taken from around the world. Nuclear Blast went all out to release this worthy send-off to Pungent Stench, and I think fans of Pungent or fans of great death metal will agree with me.
(article published 3/10/1998)
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