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Showing posts from October, 2016

Ulcerate "Shrines Of Paralysis"

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It is hard to quite put into words the monstrous fury of Ulcerate.  The difficulty largely lies in the fact that for every bludgeoning riff, hammer blow drum hit or swirling wall of noise that the New Zealanders strike the listener with, there's a remarkable amount of deftness and skill in the calculations they invoke to deliver their assault.

There were times when I listened to "Vermis" (the predecessor to "Shrines..." for the uneducated reader) and that precision was off, albeit very minutely.  The vocals for example on the bands 2013 opus felt some how lost in the mix and at times there was a sense of not actually being aware whether they had begun or not.  They are some of course who thought this a clever use of the mixing desk to create that folly deliberately, but for me the storm of Ulcerate's sound needed that extra bit of definition vocally to turn a great album into an absolute classic.

Thankfully, here on the band's fifth full length offering…

Asphyx "Incoming Death"

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Twenty five years ago Asphyx released "The Rack".  Twenty five motherfudgin' years ago!  That makes me feel old, really old.  I never even liked it either, despite the fuss amongst my peers has always been how great it is I just didn't get the fuss.  Thankfully, the Dutch death/doom mob got better immediately with "Last One On Earth" which still remains one of my favourite albums of all time to this day, and although I openly admit that they are guilty of a lack of consistency I found the last two Asphyx albums reasonably entertaining.  "Death...The Brutal Way" and "Deathhammer" both receive regular plays still and the latter even made my "end of year list" for 2012.

"Incoming Death" picks up more or less where "Deathhammer" signed off.  There's no major shift in sound or style to report and there's no major ball dropping to report (thankfully) either.  Pretty much as with my Sodom review earlier tod…

Sodom "Decision Day"

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If Tom Angelripper is to be believed, Sodom never look to recreate past sounds when writing new material. Perhaps after thirty five years it is hard to record anything that isn't fundamentally Sodom in sound because album number fifteen is unmistakably Sodom through and through.  Fundamentally it is as familiar as it is energetic and fresh sounding, as though the prevailing three decades of releases have somehow left enough room for eleven more tracks of "more of the same" just delivered with the intensity of a band much younger in years.

"Decision Day" nods to the "old-school" like a plastic doll on the dashboard in an off road vehicle.   Angelripper is in superb form with is particular brand of blackened growls and the record drips with distinctly Sodom thrash riffs from start to finish. However there's an infusion of groove there too to accompany the familiar crunch and BM atmosphere to proceedings.

Album opener "In Retribution" with …