Album Review: Liberaci Dal Male – Tenebro

Tenebro is self-described “horror glorifying Death Metal from Fulci’s land.” For many, there are no other words necessary, as such an announcement practically screams for one to hit play immediately. If you are one of those people, just go on ahead. The rest of us will catch up with you. Still here? Alright then, you’ll have to forgive me for writing a whole bunch more.  

Lucio Fulci was an Italian director best known for his graphically violent horror films, mostly made during the late 1960’s and 1970’s, and became known as “The Godfather of Gore.” Fertile ground for any Death Metal band, which could be considered the understatement of 2021 (you’re welcome), but being a band from Italy certainly gives Tenebro some street cred in the Fulci-inspired Death Metal game. Sort of like if Revolting put out an album inspired by the work of Lars Von Trier, or if Morgoth put out a concept album based on “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.” Anybody could do it, but only a select few should do it. One real life example would be the Italian Death Metal band actually called Fulci. Those fuckers are spectacularly grotesque, in all the best ways, and even though “Liberaci dal Male” isn’t produced at the level Fulci is, Tenebro does a damn good job keeping up with their fellow brutal countrymen. 

(Fun fact: There is another gore-themed DM band from Fulci’s land called Carnivorous Vagina, which is a great bit of knowledge to have for those uncomfortable lulls in conversation often had on first dates. Try it. Then shoot me a message… tell me how that goes.) 

“Liberaci dal Male” is a re-release of Tenebro’s 2020 EP of the same name, along with their three-song Demo from 2019 as sort of a B-side. Italian label Xtreem Music is responsible for this excellent idea, and if you’re unfamiliar with them, Tenebro is as good a place to start as any. You’ll have plenty of time to check out their back catalogue, which you’ll most certainly want to do, as “Liberaci dal Male” is a short but sweet affair clocking in at just over twenty minutes.  

“Cannibalismo Sanguinario” (Bloody Cannibalism) fires up the chainsaw with a riff so nasty, faces may freeze in a permanent state of ugliness, which is all fun and games until “Arte Funeraria” (Funerary Art) slows it down with an even nastier one. It takes what the chainsaw left behind and grinds it into tiny bits, giving “Il Lamento dei Malati” (Lament of the Sick) a perfect reason to be called what it is called. 

Filled with terrifying horror movie samples, unapologetically filthy guitar work, and gloriously disgusting guttural vocals (both provided by a man who calls himself Il Becchino (The Undertaker), these three songs are well worth the price of admission. And, like any good carnival coaster, you may puke all over your feet when it’s over, but the ride will be worth it. 

The demo portion of “Liberaci dal Male,” perhaps not surprisingly, is less polished, but no less enjoyable than the first half. A song called “All’interno del Cimitero” (Inside the Cemetery), quite fittingly, closes things out. 

Tenebro isn’t doing things much differently than bands like Evulse, Fluids, or Mortician. But if you’re into bands like these, you’re not looking for them to be fuckin cute with their Death Metal. There’s a time and place for these things, of course, as bands like Gorguts and Cryptopsy can most assuredly attest (whilst ripping off my ears for calling them cute). But a no-frills, straight through your skull, damned if it’s gonna waste one second trying to show off its fancy pants kind of record is what Tenebro serves up on a bloody platter here. Goddamned fantastic! These dudes need to release a full length post haste! 

Rating – 4/5

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