Finland's Demigod produced one album worthy of its name before falling into turmoil with line-up changes, label distrust and a lack of commitment. When the decision to change the band name was reversed, the band recorded a demo simply called Promo '94 which proved the band still has what it takes to produce fantastic death metal, but it just was not to be. Over the years, fans have rumoured a return of these death metallers but nothing concrete has developed. 2001 brought news that the band is now on Spikefarm and recording. An album is finally released. Shortly thereafter Seppo Taatila left and was replaced by ex-Torn man Tuomo Latvala. This man finds some success in Torture Killer. Xtreem Music (follow-up to Drowned) reissued the band’s debut, with bonus demo material in early 2006. The group also returned to the Spanish label for its Let Chaos Prevail album. The disc was recorded a year earlier independently by the band. The band’s sole original member was guitarist Kiiski. The band parted ways with guitarist Tero Laitinen and recruited Tuomas Karppinen of Torture Killer instead in 2007. November of 2008 brought news that Demigod had once again thrown in the towel. Xtreem Music had coincidentally just issued T-shirts featuring the artwork from The Slumber OF Sullen Eyes album.
DEMIGOD - SLUMBER OF SULLEN EYES - XTREEM
Demigod’s Slumber Of Sullen Eyes is probably the best death metal release out of Finland ever. Whether this re-release is justified depends on how available this disc has been on the market, although the original album was issued by Drowned Productions, which later morphed into Xtreem of course.
It is one of the astonishing quirks of the metal scene that Demigod was able to only record and release two full-length albums. The band has been going in one form or the other, but in its heyday the band tried to obtain a decent recording deal and was met with rejection after rejection. To be fair, the line-up was consistently in flux or on hiatus or travelling overseas thus unnerving potential labels. Then again, the band was so fed up with the music industry that Dave Rotten of Drowned/Repulse/Xtreem had me dub him the band’s Promo ’94. The band would not send him one.
Musically, Slumber Of Sullen Eyes is not the fastest, heaviest or scariest death metal album out there. Instead, it gives tangibility to the band’s original sound, harmonized guitars, unique riffs and recognizable melodies. While the core of most songs consists of mid-paced and occasionally even doomy, distorted walls of guitar the demigods break into a fast segment often. It is remarkable how memorable and even hummable the band’s death metal is. The approach is undoubtedly abetted by the curious time changes, sound changes and guitar experimentations one hears in songs like As I Behold I Despise, the title track, Tears Of God or Darkened. The band does hint at the early Finnish death metal scene (Disgrace’s debut or Adramelech), but frankly is in a league of its own in 1992.
This version tacks the band’s 1991 demo Unholy Domain as a bonus, which in contrast to the album is fuzzier, noisier and less refined. Nonetheless, the re-release is above and average. The album is one of a handful of essential death metal historical records and belongs in the collection of serious enthusiasts. - Ali “The Metallian”
DEMIGOD - LET CHAOS PREVAIL - XTREEM
Finnish band Demigod garners a lot of respect around Metallian Towers especially for its debut album from more than ten years ago, Slumber Of Sullen Eyes. Admittedly, it is a good piece of death metal history and holds up to this day. Let Chaos Prevail is another solid death metal album that shows the band has not given up just yet and is still writing very respectable death metal with little in the way of extras or fancy. The line-up of the band has changed and one would logically expect several changes despite the core death metal being constant. For one the vocals of Tuomas Ala-NissilÃ¤ are more guttural and sound like an extreme version of Sepultura circa 1989. The bass sound is higher and much more audible in the mix. The guitars stay true to Demigod, but try on the sporadic technical mix. The album’s opener Not Dead Enough is a good example of the band mixing brutality with more complex elements. In contrast, To See The Last One Die is diverse and weaker, End Of Evolution is thrashy and Baptized In Enmity (cool title) ends the album again more varied, but without the need to leave the metal genre. Demigod should have been much more productive, but at least there is a relatively new album that fans and the curious can sink their teeth into. - Ali “The Metallian”