Decameron - _My Shadow..._
(No Fashion Records, 1996)
by: Drew Snow (7 out of 10)
It seems that nowadays, almost any extreme metal band coming out of a Scandinavian country feels obligated to incorporate -some- kind of strong black metal influence. You've seen it for yourself, release after release being described (not without good reason) as "death/black," or "black death metal" or something similar. Not that I mind; on the contrary the majority (I stress majority) have been very worthy albums. However, it's still nice to see a band emerge from Sweden without a hint of much black metal connection. Decameron is one such band, and they play distinctly Swedish death metal which reminds me a lot of Merciless (_Unbound_) with perhaps a little more melodic DM influence from the likes of Dark Tranquillity. On the whole, the music is pretty enjoyable. Tempo changes and melody are abundant, yet the sound retains relative brutality and aggression. As mentioned, there are a lot of similarities to (the now disbanded) Merciless, with kind of a death/thrash sound at times and vocals that are neither death nor black, but instead more of a controlled scream. As a side note, this album weighs in at a lengthy 62 minutes, almost twice the length of your average Swedish release. This album has its highs, especially the second and last tracks, as well as many parts in the other songs, and the solos are very well played and wonderful sounding. On the other hand, the low moments are few and far between, and I can't see any real reason -not- to recommend this CD.

(article published 2/1/1997)

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