Chuck Schuldiner

Rating: 89/100

Reviewed by: Thomas Nielsen, January '05
Karmageddon Media
Death Metal

Zero Tolerance

Yes, I realise that I’m a tad behind the times with this review, but better late than never, and I just received the platter in the mail, alright…

After the sad passing of super-talent Chuck Schuldiner, a number of fairly dodgy releases saw the light of day and this is probably one of them. I have no idea whether Chuck’s mom will receive any of the proceeds from it, but  I can just hope that it is the case and get on with assessing the sounds on there.

What makes this CD most interesting is the inclusion of four tracks that would in some form have turned into songs on the Control Denied album that never emerged. The four tracks were recorded during rehearsals by Chuck and drummer Richard Christy, vocals not yet included. These raw recordings make it even more evident how brilliant a guitarist and song writer the world lost when Chuck fell victim to the cancer ghost. Not surprisingly, the tracks ooze of Death; technical, tight, advanced but not to the point of boredom. These four tracks of rehearsal recordings are worth more than a hundred albums by many other artists out there, frankly.

The remaining six tracks on the CD are taken from the two Death demo’s “Infernal Death” (1985) and “Mutilation” (1986). This is naturally not cream of the crop production/mixing, and the band definitely wasn’t the tightest act around in 1985 or 1986, but it gives you an idea what this very, very young Chuck Schuldiner would soon become, namely one of the most influential guitarists throughout metal-dom.

Rest in peace, Chuck, and someone let us finally hear the songs that were actually recorded for the Control Denied album!