Album Reviews International Music

Messerschmitt: ‘Oh Death’ Album Review

We’ve spent plenty of time at Monster Riff celebrating bands from around the world. We’re rounded up some of our favorite bands from Greece, we’ve listed out the hottest acts in Sweden, and we’ve outlined the heaviest Stoner Rock hitters in Germany.

Maybe it’s time to tackle Norway. Because even though Slomosa cleaned up at The Doomies last year and The Devil And The Almighty Blues boast more than 51,000 monthly Spotify listeners, we don’t see a ton of coverage for our Norwegian rockers.

That’s a serious mistake. The Stoner Rock scene is alive and well in western Scandinavia, and that’s partially thanks to bands like Messerschmitt.

In their latest release, Oh Death, Messerschmitt delivers a true, unadulterated Stoner Rock album packed with hard-hitting riffs and aggressive layers of distortion. 

Apart from a few Psychedelic surprises and deviations, Messerschmitt revitalizes that wonderful, pure essence of Stoner Rock, offering a few raucous tracks one after the other.

Messerschmitt "Oh Death" Album Cover and Review

About Messerschmitt

Messerschmitt has actually been around since 2004, when the band members were in their teens. The band released Messerschmitt in 2013, then toured and played a few festivals before a brief hiatus that lasted until 2019. 

Today, Messerschmitt is:

  • Mats Henrik Hansen – Guitar and Main Vocals
  • Kristian Djuve – Drums
  • Carl Fredrik Sandaker – Bass 

Oh Death features guest appearances from Kjetil Nernes from Årabrot (noise guitar on “Oh Death”) and Thomas Eriksen of Mork (vocals on “Ava Satani”). The album was mixed by Adam Kesper, who has worked with notable acts like Nirvana (“You Know You’re Right”), Queens of the Stone Age (Songs for the Deaf), and the Foo Fighters (There Is Nothing Left to Lose).

Oh Death Review

Release Date: November 5, 2021
Tracks: 6
Length: 28:18

Track One: Gummo Ain’t For Nothing

Dark and heavy, “Gummo Ain’t For Nothing” immediately calls to mind Cowboys & Aliens, the Belgian rockers behind Love Sex Volume. That connection is only emphasized further by Mats Henrik Hansen’s vocal approach—one very similar to Henk Vanhee’s.

As an album opener, “Gummo Ain’t For Nothing” does exactly what it’s supposed to do: It sets the tone with a powerful, hard-hitting riff that propels the album forward.

Track Two: If You See Me Weep

“If You See Me Weep” rides on a slower open, gradually building up its lo-fi Stoner Rock sound. As the guitars and drums rise, Mats Henrik Hansen’s vocals come in, thick and distorted, over a wave of backup vocals that call to mind some of John Garcia’s solo work. 

In many ways, “If You See Me Weep” is the most compelling song on the record, especially as it ascends to a whirling crescendo of powerful, frenetic drums and a storm of Kyuss-inspired guitars and bass lines. 

Track Three: Ava Satani (Blood, We Want Blood!)

“Blood! We want blood!” Backed by the pummeling waves of distorted guitars, we just about believe these growled vocals.

There are two especially interesting moments in the second half of this song—two brief instances where the band sounds like they’re about to slip deep into the Psychedelic Doom scene. Don’t be surprised to see them explore that sound even further on their next studio project.

Track Four: Oh Death

Inspired by the Dock Boggs’ Appalachian Folk classic, Messerschmitt pulls many of the original lyrics and applies them to their own brand, while admittedly taking a few liberties in the process.

And although it opens on a Black Sabbath-esque riff, the title track eventually channels the energy of early Queens of the Stone Age, allowing a piercing guitar to meander through the song. 

Track Five: No Tomorrow

Just as the brief Psychedelic Doom influences caught us off guard in “Ava Satani,” the keyboard in “No Tomorrow” is also a surprise. After a slow, deliberate build (with a bit of straightforward Doom influence), the band breaks into a bright and colorful organ solo. “No Tomorrow” isn’t the best song on the album, but the keyboard in the second half definitely helps to elevate it. 

Track Six: Kill From Above

“Kill From Above” nearly sounds like a different band entirely. With a little more Psychedelic influence than before, “Kill From Above” builds gradually, relying on a smooth guitar versus the fuzzy, distorted attack of earlier songs.

“Kill From Above” is definitely a great track, but it’s a surprising deviation from the expectations.

Final Thoughts

Final Score: 7.5/10

Standout Tracks: “If You See Me Weep” and “Kill From Above”

Pros: It’s been a long, long time since we had something close to a straightforward Stoner Rock record come through Monster Riff. Apart from the few dips into the Heavy Psychedelic territory, Oh Death fits that classic Stoner Rock template perfectly.

If you’re immediately pulling comparisons to bands like Kyuss, Black Sabbath, Queens of the Stone Age, and peak Cowboys & Aliens, you know you’re doing something right. At its very best (like on “If You See Me Weep”), Oh Death is an absolute Stoner Rock staple.

Cons: Messerschmitt seems to have plenty of ideas left in the tank, and many of them seem to be a little unexplored. “Kill From Above,” for example, is a fascinating Psychedelic experiment—but it’s the only song where we see Messerschmitt in that form. 

There’s a similar question mark at the end of “No Tomorrow.” “No Tomorrow” is built on a couple of interesting ideas, but the final product seems like the band could have used a little extra room to explore the song and concepts a little further. 

Bottom line: “Oh Death” is an album worth checking out, but it may leave you wanting a tiny bit more from the band.

Learn More About Messerschmitt

To learn more about Messerschmitt, check them out on Bandcamp or follow them on Facebook

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