SEQUESTRUM – Pickled Preservation (2023)REVIEW

Fire up your hygrometers, bone up on tissue specific rates of polymerization by osmotic fluid transfer, and prepare to will the flesh into everlasting stasis by way of six instructive tales… of slow-brined fixative autolytic prevention in symposium, a ghoulish host of gut-grabbing “tidbit preservationist” fantasies made real by Copenhagen, Denmark-based deathgrind quartet Sequestrum on this gruntin’ n’ splatterin’ flap-slosher of a debut mLP. Not-so cryptic horrors and wetter than thou spuming await their ingress upon an unwitting public as we find ‘Pickled Preservation‘ striking every available gag reflex with wriggling fingers and groaty, plopping atmospheric release. An ancient craft of anti-art music lives on in their minds, a gory and disturbed extremism caked with ugly guitar tones, oddly rocking chunk riffs, and the glorification of foulest medical horrors meant to disturb the listener to the point of involuntary repulsion.

Sequestrum officially formed in the midst of 2021 between two guitarists, Søren Willatzen (Chaotian) and David Torturdød (Undergang, Phrenelith) looking to do something they weren’t already doing in other groups and at some point that’d meant late 80’s horror death metal naturally crossing wires with early deathgrind and a couple of heavy rock riffs thrown in to keep it swingin’ weird-like. The impetus for this type of music is of course early Carcass, nearby ‘Reek of Putrefaction‘ I suppose, but with some love for Blood‘s similar excess and the folks who were influenced by that stuff nearby per Xysma‘s demos and Impetigo‘s relentless genius (they cover “Dis-Organ-Ized” on this record.) But we’re getting ahead of ourselves, eh, since they’d started out with a bit more of an almost there 80’s goregrind sound on their first demo (‘Epitome of Putridity‘, 2022) wherein the vocals were halfway pitched down and the rock riffs merely sewn-in (“Tache Noire”). The bolder personae we find on ‘Pickled Preservation‘ hadn’t been cranked unto the absurd yet, but it didn’t take ’em long to find somewhere to go with it.

More sloshing, more samples, and an approach which recalls a cleaned-up nowadays version of Necrony‘s ‘Severe Malignant Pustule‘ (right down to the pitch-shifted vocals and an excess of watery wastepipe bound noises) means, sure, ‘Pickled Preservation‘ is a fun and kinda fucked up record in an old but still generally rare style. There’ll be no reason to get elbow deep in ’em with just about ~17 minutes of material here, expect short and muddy goregrind songs which hit a few riffs, find a groove once in a while and otherwise entertain with a host of spectacular nausea. “Preserved to Last” is the one to sell the record or at least the song that sells a bit of everything Sequestrum does between garage death metal push (see also: “Consigned to Humus”, “Giblet Excreter”), distorted bass surges, jogging grind riffs, and a somewhat unexpected swing into a southern rock groove. They could go a lot further with the rock riff thing if they wanted to, this particular implementation kinda speaks to deathgrind bands going halfway death n’ roll in their demo stages circa 1991 and, I dunno, earlier Soilent Green fans would get it on some level too. “Human Broth” iterates upon this dynamic, including a cowbell even, for another quick highlight on the sluice through the full listen.

Though Sequestrum give off an appropriate level of fucked up, obnoxious stench on their decidedly over-the-top first impression between sewer ASMR, old underground goregrind tropes and pitch-shifted vocals the meatus of ‘Pickled Preservation‘ kinda redeems as a core conceit, a band with a memorable idea or two and a fairly unique feeling (these days) in their implementation. It ends up being a place worth going not only for the sake of nostalgia but for their own fucked up take on deathgrind n’ roll otherwise. A moderately high recommendation.

Moderately high recommendation. (76/100)

Rating: 7.5 out of 10.
TITLE:Pickled Preservation [mLP]
LABEL(S):Extremely Rotten Productions
RELEASE DATE:January 27th, 2023

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