Unleashing Terror: House By The Cemetary’s Evolved Sound in The Mortuary Hauntings

The Mortuary Hauntings, the follow-up to their 2021 debut Rise Of The Rotten, is once again inspired by a passion for cult horror films, particularly Fulci, with an element of Lovecraftian influence for good measure. But this time around, House By The Cemetary have developed and stylised their old school Death Metal sound a little more. It’s still old school, but there’s a decidedly forward-thinking aspect in there, bringing a few added elements to surprise listeners.

House By The Cemetary – The Mortuary Hauntings (Pulverised Records)

Release Date: 31 May 2024

Words: Jools Green

The trio, riff-overlord Rogga Johansson, Monstrosity vocalist Mike Hrubovcak and Paganizer drummer Matthias Fiebig, deliver a compact, thirty-minute, eight-track offering that will simultaneously assault and delight your senses. 

Each band member has pushed their capabilities a little more on this offering. Opening with Cadavers Emerge, it’s raw, crunchy and brutal from the offset. The cavernous raw vocals deliver the lyrics with unnerving clarity, both here and across the duration of the album. 

House By The Cemetary - The Mortuary Hauntings (Pulverised Records)
House By The Cemetary – The Mortuary Hauntings (Pulverised Records)

This track is like an up close and personal visit from your worst nightmare, in the best possible way and as the track progresses, it’s offset with an addictive repeating groove. You can’t help but love this track as it sweeps you along in its horrific wake. 

Next up, Beware Of The Woods, is a raw, punchy driver from offset with vocals carving through like a rusty knife. I really like the complexity of the riff work as well as the addition of a subtle breakdown element, which adds impact and power to the track without being overstated in its delivery, and the vocal protractions are spine-tinglingly superb. 

Opening in a superbly protracted roar, The Realm Of The Cursed goes on to deliver wave after wave of chugging, crushing riffs bolstered by those impactfully protracted raw vocals.

Beyond Oblivion’s opening riffs have a classic Rogga feel. I love the haunting undercurrent that appears in the first half and towards the close. Again, there’s a very subtle breakdown element, and the second-half scream and echo of “The gates are open” are superbly unnerving. 

House By The Cemetary - The Mortuary Hauntings (Pulverised Records)
House By The Cemetary – The Mortuary Hauntings (Pulverised Records)

Infested is an up-tempo beast that engulfs you. It has an unstoppable drive that, aside from a couple of well-placed, impactful, brief pauses, is an unrelenting assault on your senses. The drum work across the album is great and exceptionally so on this piece. The up-tempo assault continues with the Lovecraftian tale The Book Of Eibon with its classic old-school qualities.  

With menacingly undulating riffs, Tortured Severe is another track where Rogga gets a little more experimental with his riffing, dropping in some hypnotically groovy crushers into the mix which sits so well with the unnervingly delivered lyrics. I love the industrial element and drum work melds at the end as it gives a very unnerving finish to the track.

The penultimate offering, Opening The Gates of Hell, is superbly eerie and suspenseful to open. The protraction on Mike’s vocals is impressive and unnervingly effective. The pace gradually builds in chugging increments, developing complex twists and turns with the unnerving quality maintained throughout. I love the blasts of drum beats towards the close, as they add to the terror-infused mood.

Final piece, Crypts Of Torment, is heralded by a single bell toll. Then, we are straight into an up-tempo pace that is also full of complex twists and direction shifts. With eerie, searing second-half leadwork and a final tolling bell, this is a superbly sinister ending to the album.

Recorded by House By The Cemetary with mixing duties shared between Ronnie Björnström at EAP Productions and Håkan Stuvemark at Necrotic Audio Productions, with mastering also handled by Håkan Stuvemark. The superbly detailed and eerie cover artwork is by Columbian illustrator Felipe Mora (Critical Defiance, Consumption, Mortify, etc).

If you enjoyed the House By The Cemetary debut Rise Of The Rotten, then you will absolutely love The Mortuary Hauntings, which will be available at Bandcamp and via Plastic Head / Soulfood as CD, Vinyl or digital download.

Sleeve Notes

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