In 1991, two members of some well-known bands started working together under the name Curriculum Mortis. These people were Fredrik Andersson (Amon Amarth, A Canorous Quintet, Guidance of Sin) and Leo Pignon (A Canorous Quintet, Niden div. 187), and the year was 2001. In mid 2002, these two recorded parts of a demo, assisted by Linus Nirbrant (A Canorous Quintet, Guidance of Sin, The Dead) on most bass and some guitar. A few weeks later, Mattias Leunikka (of Guidance of Sin) did the vocals. After some delay, mid 2003 saw the release of these recordings, as the five-track demo EP "Into Death".

Unfortunately I am unfamiliar with their previous bands. Even the best p2p apps didn't yield any songs by A Canorous Quintet for me to check out. Curriculum Mortis, as it is, is kindof a death metal band with some hardcore influences. These hardcore influences primarily stem from Mattias Leinikka's voice. Playing on the tracks is very tight, with amazingly accurate fast drums. "Kill all Life", the opener, is an excellent track. It is followed by the title track, which is also good. Curriculum Mortis fill their music with cool guitar-harmonies (or whatever you call 'em), which are prevalent on all tracks. "Walls of Ice" is slower and somewhat sadder-sounding, however it lacks the impact of the other tracks. The hardcore vocals are most notable here, and it's very repetitive lyrically. Up next is "Frail", which is actually a short, previously unreleased track by A Canorous Quintet. It's pretty OK.

It is a good thing the album isn't any longer after the fifth track, "Preserve You Forever", because by that time it begins to get obvious that most of the music by Curriculum Mortis is about the same tempo, using the same sound, and using the same counter-harmony guitar style. Had they made a full length album with this music, I would have become boring.

Added a little later:

I have in the mean time heard quite a few A Canorous Quintet tracks and I can say that Curriculum Mortis is nothing like it. In fact, Canorous is a whole lot better.



Written August 2003


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