Sound — 10
Formed in 1998 by Opeth frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt, former Opeth producer Dan Swanö, and Katatonia members Jonas Renkse & Anders Nyström. The goal was to play old school sounding death metal in the realm of Entombed. The EP was recorded and released in the year 2000, featuring Nyström on guitar, Renkse on bass, Swanö on drums & Åkerfeldt on vocals. The music (except for one riff and a keyboard section) was written by Nyström and the lyrics were written by Åkerfeldt.
The guitar work is very straight forward and there's no solos, it's just all about the riffs, and when the riffs are this good you might not even notice. The production on the album is very clear while still remaining raw and unpolished, and even if the guitar sound is not as flesh ripping as on the first full-length album, "Resurrection Through Carnage," it's still very gory and similar to early Entombed and Celtic Frost. The drumming is also pretty basic and just focuses on getting your head banging, Swanö would later switch to guitar which I think suited him much better. The bass is sweet and loud, but Renkse is normally a vocalist, so don't expect anything special.
"Breeding Death" - Great opener, filled with riffs that just scream of old school death metal. Has the best lyrics on the EP, which follows the same formula as the music. The best part of the song is the slow and almost groovy bridge with a cool guitar lead on top.
"Omnious Bloodvomit" - The shorter track, fast and straight to the point. Has lots of jumps between parts and some nice drum fills. The chorus is really awesome, almost catchy, and the bridge features a riff written by Åkerfeldt that was probably intended for Opeth.
"Furnace Funeral" - My favorite out of the three, every single riff is a contender for best riff on the EP. The lyrics tell the story of a person that is being cooked for dinner: "Oven of disgust, companion of distrust / Medium rare for the course is a must." The song slows down during the bridge and in comes this epic keyboard part that is obviously an ode to Entombed's classic song "Left Hand Path." The melody however, sound more like something you would hear by a melodeath band like Children of Bodom or Kalmah. The song hits back with full force for one last moment of aggression.
Lyrics — 9
Åkerfeldt's growling isn't as good as on Opeth's "Still Life," probably because he wasn't taking it as serious, since Bloodbath was kind of started as a bit of a joke. He really stepped up his game on later releases, growling better than he's ever done on any Opeth record, even "Watershed." He left the band in 2011 when he started getting problems with his growling, something you can hear on the "Bloodbath Over Bloodstock" DVD.
The lyrics are just awesome and almost comedic, but still well written enough to not sound silly or generic:
"Aiming at your face
using piss for mace
Painting the wall with the blood of a slut
Agonizing scrotum beginning to rot."
"I seem contorted, a victim of death
corrupt reality, a poisoned breath
from beyond the grave, a sight of gore
rise from the crypts, life no more."
These are very different lyrics from what Mikael usually writes, even for Bloodbath, since he has only written satanic songs like "Mock the Cross" for the band since.
Overall Impression — 9
"Breeding Death" is a great introduction to the band, as "Furnace Funeral" and the title track are on par with the bands best work. There are no blast beats or crazy solos, so it's also a great death metal starter. Apart from Åkerfeldt not giving his best performance, the only thing I can complain about is that the total running time of just 13:10 is way too short, but you can just listen to it again since it's almost impossible to get tired of these songs. If you're a big fan of old school death metal and you haven't given Bloodbath a listen, what the fuck are you waiting for!