Out of the many Rogga Johansson bands, which are frankly quite a bit too many, I think that Furnace is one of the least impressive ones. Not only because of the usual mediocre musicianship of Johansson and his companion Peter Svensson, but mostly because of the lack of depth in the production of the music. While Furnace might be considered one of Johansson’s bands with the most musical diversity, it all just comes down bland, it simply doesn’t offer anything compelling or exciting.
For that reason a full Furnace album always feels like a real burden to sit through, a 40-somewhat minutes is just too much for an album that is filled with rather bland sounding “Death” Metal. So, what were they thinking when they chose to record an album of 121 friggin’ minutes? Without wanting to sound rude or disrespectful… Really, I can’t think of any other reason to write, record and release this album (spread over three CD’s) than a total disregard for music and humanity in general. Who do they think they please with this? I honestly can’t imagine anyone enjoying this for the complete two hours in a row.
Musically it is all as one-dimensional as you can imagine, a complete second-rate mid-era Edge Of Sanity sort of blur. Even the concept of the story of Casca Rufio Longinus, the Roman soldier who murdered Jesus Christ on the cross, which is a great story in itself, doesn’t save this album from utter boredom. A concept like this deserves a much better musical background than this. The mid-tempo snoozing Death Metal is interspersed with some simple melodies, riffs that are recycled over a hundred times and Johansson’s trademark jaded grunt. While this sort of music might work on a random short player, it is impossible to keep your focus on it for this long. Of course, there are some decent riffs here and there along this two hour ride, but there is actually zero to nothing that really sticks to leave a lasting (positive) impression.
Let me set a record straight, I do love my fair share of Old School Death Metal, a lot, really, but this is just ridiculous. If ‘The Casca Trilogy’ has proven one thing then it is that Furnace is indeed one of those bands that Johansson should consider ditching.