Sound — 7
Bloodbath is basically a tribute to early death metal bands made up of members of Opeth and Katatonia. It's heavy stuff, if not the most original metal ever. That doesn't mean it's bad, by any means - in fact it's quite good. A lot of this album sort of walks along at a medium tempo, with fast tremolo picking/blasting sections interspersed regularly to keep the songs interesting. There's the occasional slower break too, which instead of being boring actually add to the songs. The guitar tone is classic Swedish Death Metal tone - low tuned guitars run through a Boss HM-2 distortion pedal into a fairly high gain amp. The drums are well played and sound okay but the bass is nowhere to be found (as is the norm on most modern metal albums, sadly). The guitar solos are really nothing to write home about, but they do add to the songs at times especially on "Slaughtering The Will To Live".
Lyrics — 8
I personally believe this is one of Mikael Akerfeldt's best performances with his death growl. He sounds great on this release, arguably better than he does on most of the Opeth releases. The lyrics are, as expected, rather anti-religious or Satan-invoking (see "Mock The Cross" and "Drink From The Cup Of Heresy"). Consider me unsurprised. They're well written though, and aren't completely ridiculous. Unlike most death metal vocalists, Mikael's death growls are actually intelligible for the most part. This is a rarity considering how the vocals are delivered.
Overall Impression — 8
Compared to "Resurrection Through Carnage" or "Nightmares Made Flesh", I'd say this album is better but similar. It really sounds like modernized early 90s Swedish Death Metal (think Dismember, early Desultory, early Entombed) with a better production. Best part of the album is the songwriting, the worst is the production. There really isn't any bottom end on the album, and the drums are kind of weak sounding outside of the snare and cymbals. I'd buy it again if I lost it, for sure. Choice Tracks: - At The Behest Of Their Death - Slaughtering The Will To Live - Mock The Cross - Devouring The Feeble - Earthrot