"Hellbrigade" (Repulse Records; 2000)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Centinex are a Swedish death metal band in the style popularized by At The Gates and the many followers since they broke new ground in what is known as the melodic death metal scene (FWIW, I still don't like the term 'melodic death metal'). After numerous demos, mini-CDs, EPs, a couple of full-length CDs, and countless line-up changes "Hellbrigade" is Centinex's latest effort.

"Hellbrigade" twists its death metal sound with a bit of crusty grind and an added focus on speeding up the proceedings. Nearly every song has a neat, hook-laden rhythm part amidst the typical double-bass drum blasting that clearly demonstrates Centinex's penchant for writing good riffs. However, those sparkling riffage forays, as good as they are, simply are not enough to make each song worth hearing.

While I didn't feel the need to remove "Hellbrigade" from the CD player while I was listening to it I do know it is very unlikely I'll be pulling this CD from my shelf to hear it again anytime soon. 

The nine tracks (on my promo anyway) move quickly enough and "Last Redemption" is likely to be included on future mixed CDs that I make that focus on bands like In Flames, Gardenian, and Dark Tranquillity.  

Please note that the official release will likely contain twelve tracks. 

Fans of At The Gates, early In Flames, and early Dark Tranquillity will like Centinex. 

"Hellbrigade" was produced by Centinex; Peter Tagtgren (Hypocrisy) mastered the CD.

Centinex is Johan Jansson on vocals, Jonas Kjellgren and Kenneth Wiklund on guitars, Martin Schulman on bass, and Kennet Englund on drums.

For more information visit http://www.repulserecords.com or http://www.centinex.com

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright 2001 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 09 Dec 2018 12:03:11 -0500 .