Emblazoned – Eucharistiae Sacramentum (Review)

EmblazonedEmblazoned are from the US and this is their début album. They play Blackened Death Metal.

This is music with an evil feel created by minions of some Dark Lord or other who worship and defile their way through 8 tracks of daemonic Death Metal.

The deep growls and high screams call out hymns to darkness whilst the crushing production allows the music to be both heavy and precise.

All of the instruments are clear and played with surgical steel. The drums have an especially crisp sound to them, the bass is audible and worthwhile and the guitars have a crunchy, crushing edge.

The riffs have a Blackened feel to a lot of the melodies which adds a touch of the underworld to the songs; they already have a malevolent feel to them as it is and as the band are mainly interested in creating a brutally evil atmosphere it’s only to be expected that a Black Metal influence should make its way onto the album.

The songs are very enjoyable and make the most of their relatively short playing time by effortlessly blending the brutality of streamlined Death Metal with the dark feeling of Black Metal.

Emblazoned combine parts of bands like Deicide, The Black Dahlia Murder, Satyricon, Behemoth, Arsis and Lvcifyre into their merciless sound and the result is a very strong album indeed.

It’s time for you to check out Emblazoned and join them in their war against the forces of light.

Miasmata – Demo (Review)

MiasmataThis is the first demo by Dutch Death Metal band Miasmata.

It opens explosively with pignoise and blastbeats. A firm opening statement if ever there was one.

It may be just a demo but the sound is acceptable enough and showcases the band’s blend of chugging slam and blasting brutality. Solos and the odd flash of melodics appear in the songs as the band aren’t adverse to adding a bit of colour to the tracks.

I’d classify this short demo as a cross between Dying Fetus and Deicide. This songs are surprisingly enjoyable and overall I like this. This is no frills, no nonsense Death Metal that gets the job done nicely.

This demo is a good first release and if the band spend a bit more time honing their art then I think their eventual début album will go down a storm.

Have a listen.


Deus Otiosus – Rise (Review)

Deus OtiosusDeus Otiosus are from Denmark and play Death Metal.

The band open the album strongly with Rising War and the rest of the album follows in this vein; strong, muscular Death Metal with a hint of Thrash and even a slight Rock influence to some of the riffs and leads.

The vocals are like crumbling granite. Deep and rough; they sound bestial but largely legible at the same time.

The songs are chunky and heavy with just the right amount of melody thrown in to keep things lively, but not enough to derail the heaviness that runs through the tracks like bedrock.

Well-written songs display an ear for dynamics and song structure whilst retaining a raw aggression tempered by a Thrash sensibility. If you imagine a merging of Morbid Angel, Deicide and Malevolent Creation then you won’t be too far off.

The production is crisp and clear, delivering the kind of sound that a lot of bands would kill for.

A top album. Death Metal to Thrash out to.

Aposento – Aposento (Review)

AposentoThis is the début album of Spanish Death Metal band Aposento.

Take a look at the album art. If that doesn’t scream DEATH METAL at you at then I don’t know what does. Top work.

Aposento have been around for a very, very long time but this is the first album they’ve actually released. Kind of crossing the sound of bands like Avulsed and Deicide, Aposento offer us in-your-face Death Metal with an understanding of what makes a good song catchy and memorable while simultaneously piling on the brutality.

A strong, solid sound increases the impact the songs have with the riffs and pounding drums working in unison to plough down anything in front of it.

Vocally the singer is deep and follows the Avulsed school of guttural noises.

The songs take elements of Old-School Death Metal and merge them with a more timeless style of Death Metal akin to Cannibal Corpse’s USDM in the sense that it’s not ultra-modern but it’s not completely Old-School either; rather it contains elements of the timeless Classic style. Ultimately this is Death Metal, and no-one would have trouble recognising this for what it is.

Quality Death Metal played by lifers who know their business.

Annihilation – Against the Storm (Review)

AnnihilationPortuguese band Annihilation play Death Metal. This album came out a good few years ago now and judging by what happened when I pressed play it’s a sin that I’ve overlooked them for this long.

When the first track Tortured With Hate started I involuntarily exclaimed “ooooh yeaaah!” under my breath. This is the stuff that keeps me returning to Death Metal again and again and again! After the excitement of the cataclysmic opening I calmed myself and tried to listen objectively, but it was no good; the sheer wanton brutality, infectious guitar melodies and multi-layered demonic-Deicide vocals had me hooked. Bye bye reason, hello Death Metal passion.

The rest of the album doesn’t disappoint. Mechanized drum brutality and sinuous, malevolent guitars battle each other for pride of place. All the time the vocalist, who appears to be blessed with Satan’s own lungs, is giving Glen Benton a serious run for his money in the Top Growler competition that I’m sure is running somewhere in the world as we speak.

It’s not all focused brutality though; there is an evil melodic streak to the band when they want to show it. They also throw in some guitar solos; especially enjoyable are the ones that sound almost lazily played; meandering over the thick chaos of the rest of the song .

This is somewhat of an unexpected revelation; Annihilation have certainly made me a very happy bunny. Can they do the same for you?

Derogatory – Above All Else (Review)

DerogatoryAn unexpectedly melodic intro sets the scene for the start of this USDM album by Derogatory. Once this is over it’s straight into the blasting, although this soon tapers off and reveals a band that are capable of varying their speed rather than always going for the most brutal option of smothering everything in blastbeats.

This album is full of Old-School Death Metal in the 90’s US style, and as such you can hear the influence of bands such as Deicide and Morbid Angel being channelled into Above All Else.

Double bass, solos, thick guitars and deep growls pepper this release in all the right places, and the songs are simple-but-effective and provide that Death Metal fix that obsessive fans of the genre crave on a daily basis.

The sound of the album is the main weak spot – it’s perfectly workman-like, but I feel the songs could be allowed to breathe better with a more coherent production. It doesn’t sound bad but it could sound better. Ultimately this doesn’t detract from the songs too much and is more of a “note for next time”.

At 9 tracks and 39 minutes, this is a pleasant romp through 90’s Death Metal that will more than satisfy fans of this genre.

Amon – Liar in Wait (Review)

AmonAs many of you will know; Amon started out life in 1987 and eventually morphed into Deicide. Now, a mere 25+ years later, we have their début album!

If you are familiar with Deicide then you know the general style here, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Among Us is the first track and sets the scene perfectly; muscular, rhythmic Death Metal with a strong sound and some excellent riffs and leads. I wasn’t sure how good this release would be, but this song instantly set my mind to rest. The remaining tracks follow this trend.

It’s clear that the passion and intensity that Eric and Brian Hoffman have for Death Metal is alive and well. This is not diluted or pasteurised in anyway – this is the real deal. What we get is riff/song-focused Metal that is effortless in its delivery and flawless in execution.

Being a very guitar-oriented album there are solos aplenty. Anyone who has been following my reviews for a while now may have noticed that I’m partial to the odd solo, so you can imagine how much I enjoy this.

The recording and general sound of this album is first-rate, as you would expect. The guitar tone is enough to bring me out in fits of excitement alone as it’s just so damn sexy, and the blazing solos on top of it is like listening to liquid gold.

It’s not all about the guitars of course, vital as they are. The drums are blasted out with passion and technique, and the vocalist is, quite frankly, excellent.

With Deicide being such a high-profile band I can imagine Amon causing a split in opinion between those that love the consistency of a familiar sound done extremely well, and between those who were hoping for something different and are disappointed. I am firmly of the former camp and I just can’t stop listening to this.