Death rock is an oddball little subgenre. One unknowing, naive soul might think it’s the laid-back cousin of death metal, and that’s worth a chuckle at least. No, death rock lies somewhere between punk rock, garage rock, doom metal, and blues, often with the dial at eleven and the fucks left to give at zero. While many would associate this with Glenn Danzig’s side project Samhain (remember, it’s pronounced “sow-wain,” ya not-heathens), this doesn’t mean that he, nor even America, has a monopoly on the death rock game.
Enter Finland’s Black Totem, a bluesy rocking outfit raising Hell since 2008. They’ve put out two EPs and a debut self-titled since their inception, and they intend to craft the year 2021 in their own image, announcing II: Shapeshifting for release on February 26th, 2021 via Svart Records. The first cut from this anticipated record is “Dead Meat,” a classic punk throwback with plenty of bluesy swagger and a nod to the aforementioned Danzig. It’s a hard-driven song with attitude, groove, and an instantly catchy main riff.
The tracklisting for the upcoming Shapeshifting is as follows:
1. Begone Vampire
2. The Devil
4. Black Nekro Gloves
5. Bloodstained Owl
6. Ghoul of Crow Swamp
7. Dead Meat
8. Backyard Corpse Blues
9. Welcome Lucifer
For those looking to play catch-up, their 2015 debut self-titled album is available as a Name Your Price release on Bandcamp. Check it out here.
In addition, check out the monochromatic music video for “Dead Meat” below: