Horrendous – Idol (Review)

Horrendous - IdolThis is the fourth album from US death metal band Horrendous.

Horrendous are a notable and important band in the death metal underground, I’d posit. As evidence I’d cite albums such as Ecdysis and Anareta, at the very least.

This is old-school death metal that’s inspired by the more traditional, classic form of death metal, while still allowing for plenty of mutations in its evolution as the band travel along their chosen path. Developing their sound in an increasingly progressive direction from their earlier releases, Horrendous’ latest 40 minutes of carnage is a treacherous and perilous journey through the underworld, but one that’s well worth braving.

Complex, technical, and progressive, the core of the band worship at the altar of bands like Death, Atheist, Cynic, Pestilence, etc. while still resolutely remaining their own masters. On Idol the band reach their progressive peak, exploring intricate pathways of macabre melody and grim atmosphere alongside their trademark heaviness and brutality. At all comes together remarkably well, and I’d say that Idol is the band’s strongest release so far.

The aforementioned melodic elements are heightened on Idol, as is the guitar wizardry in general, (SOLOS!!!). Accompanying this, however, is the presence of the wandering, self-aware bass; this is a real treat to hear, and it’s incorporated into the band’s compositions very well.

However, as well as a flair for complexity and detail, we also get some killer riffs and an appreciation of the fact that sometimes you just need to take a direct, straightforward route to bloodshed.

As I’ve opined in the past; I really like an album that takes the listener on a journey, and Idol is exactly the kind of adventure you’d want to experience from this type of death metal band. Vast, varied, and expansive, this is the peak of Horrendous’ existence thus far, in my humble opinion. Where can they go from here? Who knows, but I can’t wait to find out.

Until then, listen to Idol. Experience Idol.

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