Keitzer’s 2014 album The Last Defence was a particular favourite of mine, with its energetic and well-delivered deathgrind really hitting the spot. The follow up – 2016’s Ascension – was more of a death metal affair, and although I do prefer The Last Defence, it was still a solid and enjoyable record.
Where the Light Ends contains 37 minutes of material and finds the band blurring the lines between death metal, grind, and hardcore once more. The songs are, on average, longer once more, (and there are less of them), but this playing time is put to good use, with the band fleshing out their songs with extra servings of brutal riffs and dark melodies.
This is an enjoyable collection of tracks that, in some ways, seems to combine what I liked about both of the previous albums. It has the hardcore energy and grindcore vitality of The Last Defence, while keeping the death metal rhythmic intensity of Ascension. As alluded to previously, some of the melodic aspects of the band’s music have been heightened and improved upon for Where the Light Ends, and these elements are used as highlights and flavourings for what is a very aggressive album.
The fast blast beats and lethal guitars are delivered with real bite, but when combined with the band’s sharpened appreciation for melody it can become intoxicating. Throw in some quality riffs and transitions, and you have a sterling collection of extreme metal songs which can be surprisingly emotive and atmospheric in places.
Keitzer never fail to please, but I’m especially happy with Where the Light Ends. Full of solid deathgrind tunes, as well as a few different other ideas thrown in here and there, Keitzer’s seventh album is a firm winner.