2016’s Protocol of Dying was a very memorable and enjoyable album, one that stood out for its quality and variety. Four years later the band are now back with Death, Rule over Us, containing 41 minutes of music that improves on their already capable style.
The band’s experimental nature sees them continuing to push themselves, incorporating an array of different influences and an increasingly progressive angle into their well-delivered death metal. The songs here are, on average, longer than those of their debut album, allowing Shodan to expand into their sound with space to develop their additional elements.
The music has a modern approach and incorporates aspects of groove, technical, melodic, and thrash metal into its progressive death metal. Electronics, keyboards, and lighter introspective moments are occasionally used to add further layers and interest too. Shodan have clearly spent time on these new songs, and each has its own character and place. The diversity of delivery on display remains higher than that of your average death metal band, and Shodan use this to ably demonstrate a variety of different tools that they can proficiently use. The different stylistic influences mentioned above come into play in differing amounts across the album; sometimes the emphasis is brutality, sometimes melody, sometimes atmosphere, etc.
The singer, (also from Banisher), has a delivery that complements the music’s range, with a variety of styles adopted. He aggressively rages for the bulk of the material, as you would expect, but in a few different ways. Augmented with other styles of shouting and singing, his performance is strong.
Shodan’s new album is well-written, packed with good songs that get the pulse beating quickly, and is a well-rounded modern death metal package.
Very highly recommended indeed.