Morbific – Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realm

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Following the release of the debut album 'Ominous Seep of Putridity' in 2021 Finnish death metal trio Morbific returns with a new album titled 'Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realm', out via Me Saco Un Ojo Records (Vinyl), Memento Mori (CD) and Headsplit Records (Tape) on October 24th, 2022. Since its formation in 2020, Morbific has brought an intriguing style of Finn death metal which made them a rare example in this sub-genre. Musically, 'Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realms' feels like these Finns have got into a time machine and went way back in time to transport us to the early years of 90s death metal. While the 10 tracks in the album convey plenty of heavy parts, the music is backed by grimy guitar distortion.

There is a raw and distinctive style that demonstrates how bassist/vocalist Jusa Janhonen, guitarist Olli Väkeväinen, and drummer Onni Väkeväinen have grabbed the raw tonality of the demo recordings. The musicianship is classy and primitive. The title track ‘Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realm’ starts off in the old-fashioned whirring tremolos with the right amount of grimy riffs and fast pounding drums. The tempos are often fast and repeated with heavy guitar parts, but Morbific delivers a filthy Finnish sound. In such a fundamental way the sound remains fully adhered to its old-school trait. The riffs on the album are excellent, yet it also shows the difference between Morbific and the other Finnish underground bands.

The second track ‘Bind, Torture, Snuff’ is a sludgy aggressive one, played in a fast tempo. The guitar tone is laden with buzzing tremolo-picked riffs. There is no question that the trio incorporates aggression and intensity. It is exceptional how the music sometimes feels unsettling: especially, the bass guitar creates layers of filth and tops the rotten pitches of the rotten vocals. There are many songs like ‘Meal from an Open Skull’ that wander into a fast-paced tempo and the drums often transition into disquiet. Riffs on the album swagger in a putrid fashion with just the right amount of tempo shifts from the grinding drums, Morbific has skillfully defined its sheer mastery. ‘Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realm’ is the kind of album that is molded with raw musical influences of bands like Depravity, Funebre and Demilich. Despite the similarity to these bands, Morbific demonstrates originality and flair as they have brought something that holds true to their sound.

However, there is also a dark and paranormal element depicting the horror aspect of the music. For example, ‘Suicide Sanctum’ and ‘Initiation into Oblivion’ shows the intellect of their songwriting prowess. Morbific brings some fresh ideas: the highlight of the album is how the songs transition into a slower chord progression. There are also plenty of excellent guitar solos, and the band certainly has that old and original Finnish sound. Although this atmospheric side wasn’t fully developed on the debut album, Morbific somehow managed to convey a kind of creepy vibe on a few tracks. ‘Meth Mansion Murders’ has an aggressive proportion of fast-pounding sections and the riffs on this track drag you into the maelstrom.

The vocals on the album are full on death growls, but extremely low in the mix, the cover art immediately provokes a feeling of disgust. The drumming on ‘Baptized in the Fluids of Decay’ is followed by sordid layers of rotten filth. Although the bass guitar and drums do a great job of backing the vocals, the guitars provide layer upon layers of sludgy riffs. ‘Pathogenic Injection’ and ‘The Head Harvest’ both focus on a fast tempo, as we get treated with some varieties of fast drumming and crushing barbarity. Some of the best moments of the album are featured in the mid-tempo, when the guitar makes a transition into slowe, yet creepy, atmospheric moments and then leads to an intensive riff-craft.

In the final track ‘Malignant Germination’ the trio shows off their raw and fundamental songwriting qualities. The riffs creep forward, before the pulverizing drums make some twisted tempo changes. Ear astounding riffs get entangled with rotten growling vocals, while the middle section of the track morphs into a slower tempo. The guitars are filled with heavy down-tuned riffs and the sludgy bass generates a filthy atmosphere. The ending has some of the best guitar solos you’ll hear on this album!


  • Music / Songwriting 8/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 8/10
  • Mix / Production 9/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 9/10
  • Originality 9/10

‘Squirm Beyond the Mortal Realm’ offers both originality and old-school quality. It’s undeniable how the songs from these young Finns have that hazy demo recording sound!

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