Nasum - Grind Finale
Relapse Records
Disc 1: 90 songs (1:03:55) Disc 2: 62 songs (1:03:40)
Release year: 2006
Nasum, Relapse Records
Reviewed by Goat
Archive review

“You’ve been a very good assistant, and you’ve bought in some good parts. But what we really need now is the perfect… nasum”

So goes the clip from the obscure horror film Flesh For Frankenstein that Rickard Alriksson and Anders Jakobson took the name of their fledgling Grindcore band from, and if ever there was a humble beginning to a giant of a band, that was it. Soon adding friend of a friend Mieszko Talarczyk, the trio contributed the songs from their first official recording session (recorded by Dan Swano) to a split with Agathocles, and Nasum faced the world, nose-first. The early material was sloppy and primitive, but it kicked copious amounts of arse, and the passion that the band had for its genre was clear to all.

That passion has continued to this day, clearly. It’s easy to see the love and attention that has gone into the production of Grind Finale, a double-CD package that contains all of Nasum’s non-album sessions, as well as some unreleased songs. Each and every split 7” is here with all the exclusive tracks from compilations – a complete documentary of the band’s life, in chronological order. The eighty-page booklet is a work of art in itself, containing all the lyrics to the songs (apart from a couple that have been lost with time) as well as exclusive photographs and gig posters, and what will be most valuable to fans, some very honest and humble commentary and recollections on the songs from compiler Anders Jakobson (who also mastered this release). From his memories of the early days, such as crashing his mother’s car on the way to pick up a guest vocalist, to his regrets over later unfinished tracks, it’s obvious that this project has been a labour of love for him. As he says towards the end, Nasum was something that never got finished; yet from the evidence here the band achieved one hell of a lot.

What’s surprising is the sheer quality of the material. Yes, there may be the occasional low-quality song due to a damaged mastertape, or even one song (the first Domedagen) where there’s a mess-up, someone audibly sighs in frustration and they start again - it’s the very picture of a young, hard-working band. The songs themselves, though, are incredibly good, from the early Napalm Death-influenced Crustcorey blasts, with some amazingly catchy riffs at times, to the later technical maelstrom that Nasum became known for. It’s pointless to start pointing out highlight moments, as they come too fast and too frequently to be discussed without great length, and with over one hundred and fifty tracks even the most extreme of Grind fanatics will have enough to keep them occupied for days. My personal favourite track is the ripping cover of Refused’s The Real, but there’s no dip in quality whatsoever of the fantastic Grind that attacks your ears throughout.

Of course, it’s impossible to listen to this collection without thinking of the sadly departed Mieszko, who perished tragically in the Tsunami Disaster of late 2004. It was shocking that a man so young (three days past his thirtieth birthday) was taken from his family, friends and bandmates, as well as we the fans, and it drives home just how fragile a thing life is. Anders was clearly very affected, yet as he says in the booklet, it’s impossible not to feel pride at what a great band Nasum was, what was achieved. Shane Embury of Napalm Death credits his band’s return to its Grind roots to Nasum, and the modern leaders of the pack such as Rotten Sound clearly owe the Swedes a great debt.

This isn’t the type of thing that you can sit and listen all the way through (although I did whilst writing this review, and loved every second!) but it’s hard not to keep coming back to it, the later, more complex tracks especially. If you’re a fan of Nasum, then you should own this already, but any fan of the more extreme end of Metal will find a great deal to like here, assuming copies of this limited release are still available... Happy hunting!

‘All is gone - all is lost / But stand and be proud at any cost / Don’t give up! Don’t give in!’ -
from the lyrics to Losing Faith

Killing Songs :
Far too many to mention
Goat quoted no quote
Other albums by Nasum that we have reviewed:
Nasum - Helvete reviewed by Charles and quoted 80 / 100
Nasum - Shift reviewed by Aaron and quoted 86 / 100
3 readers voted
You did not vote yet.
Vote now

There are 4 replies to this review. Last one on Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:03 pm
View and Post comments