Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Pete Tagtren is one hell of an all rounder. The dude has played some absolute devastating death metal music with Hypocrisy and Bloodbath. And if that doesn't stand as an ode to his talents, then he's also the guy behind legendary Abyss Studios, where numerous big extreme metal acts such as Immortal, Dark Funeral and Celtic Frost to name a few have produced their albums with brilliant sound quality. And now after a 4 years hiatus, Tagtren has set the wheels in motion for Hypocrisy again with their eleventh album A Taste Of Extreme Divinity(produced at Abyss of course). And needless to say Hypocrisy hasn't lost any steam over the years and picks right up from where Virus left off.
The songs vary from fast blastbeat driven to mid tempo ones with amazing riffs catching your riffs right from the very first seconds of Valley of Damned. The songs on the albums are far away from the radio friendly melo death metal of the Arrival era and really aggressive without loosing a sense of melody. Hypocrisy are a very musical band and instead of making a any attempts at technical aspects of their music, they are very much implied about their song's harmonious nature and unlike the rest they don't rub it into your face. The content in the album is balanced perfectly, pitching intense against calm and atmospheric against chaotic nature. Like the title tack which has a very doomy start to it before the extreme blastbeats take hold of the song's mood.
If the blastbeats in the album reminds you of black metal, then don't be mistaken as the band's drummer Horgh after plays for Immortal too. And even after all these years, Tagtren's growls still manages to leave your spine chilled when you hear them, as they are still ear-piercing and monstrous in nature. High pitched too! And thats maybe to stay in touch with his alien theme. Some of the best tracks of the album are Quest and Tamed(Filled With Fear) where the former has a more groove to it whereas the latter is more in molds of melodic thrash. Sy Is Falling Down is another outstanding track with some sick guitar pickings.
Even though Hypocrisy are not as inexorable as they sounded before, their output has remained strong no matter what. With an excellent sound production and classic Hypocrisy lyrical theme of aliens and violence, there's not a single thing to point your finger out to this album. And needless to say, A Taste Of Extreme Divinity is one of the band's best releases with solid edge quality. Now so that you dont have to wait for another 5 years to wait for the next Hypocrisy album, check this one out - Taste of Extreme Divinity.
Its been two years, since I last heard some original paralyzingly shitty Egyptian mumbo jumbo with some amazingly good brutal tech death metal. So I asked God give me more, and then bang in middle of November arrives Nile's album Those Whom The Gods Detest, where their vague obsession with Egyptian mythology continues with some astounding piece of death metal supremacy that makes me indulge in a flurry of neanderthal activities of chest thumping, jumping against the wall(you cant mosh by yourself all alone, can you?) and of course headbanging! Dont understand what I mean, then listen to the track 'Hittite Dung Incantations' and drool over how the chants of egyptian bullshit gives way to some absolute cruncher of riffs and beats the shit out of your sense!
Nile are one of the very few bands who have been able to combine brutality with technicality with a touch of natural flair. So much so, that not even once while listening to them, you feel that they consciously tell themselves to make their songs 'harder-faster-louder', its more like an underlying omnipresent compulsion for them to do so. And that's what you experience when you listen to their new album, though not in every single tracks. What makes Those Whom The Gods Detest standout from their earlier releases is the presence of tracks with slower than expected tempos like 4th Arra Of Dagon. Also the presence of more traditional Egyptian instruments makes the album more astute than ever.
Tracks like Permitting The Noble Dead To Ascend To The Underworld and Utterances of Crawling Dead ensure that they continue to maintain their stupefying spectacle of displaying their unrivaled death metal fireworks. And the brilliant sound production does absolute justice to such tracks. While Sanders and Toller Wade persist in belting out complex riffs after riffs at jaw-dropping tempo, Kollias ceaselessly plays the drums with precision matched to none. However not all's perfect in the album. Even though Sanders and Co play the the kind of music you expect Nile to play after listening to them over the years, somewhere in the album you do feel that parts of songs are reminiscent of their previous works. Eye of Ra and the title track stands as a testament to this unlikable detail.
Bass too is missing in action in the album, and this just makes me wonder how much more 'br00tal' the album would've sound if they had packed that extra punch of thumping bass! But nevertheless Those Whom The Gods Detest is a solid effort from Nile for their 5th studio venture. And though there are a couple of lows in it, none are big enough to make them appear like a bunch of rag dolls in the current death metal scene as they certainly hold more weight than other 'death metal' floating in the waters. So go break your neck listening to this album or you're certainly not worthy enough to call yourself a metalhead.