After being a fan of the Spartacus
TV series, and having an interest in ancient Rome
, when I heard about this release I thought all my prayers (To Jupiter
and Minerva )had been answered. Metal
based on ancient Rome
But I was dreading that I'd be disappointed and that musically it'd sound like any other Death
metal band, but just with lyrics about ancient Rome
that you can't understand anyway.
BUT wait,I was wrong, this is AMAZING. It sort of falls into the same vein as Nile
- Fast, hyper drumming, ancient ethnic instruments, but personally I prefer this to Nile
I think it's catchier and has a more abrasive sound than Nile
. The guitar is much more crunchier than Nile
and flicks from ear to ear when wearing ear phones. The drumming is much more prominent from a production point of view and George packs some punch with his awesome ear shattering double bass drumming..
The vocalist does a great job delivering his speech. A lot of what he sings is quite legible. I do think he could vary it though but it's still a brutal performance.
But what I like about this is the Ethnic and ancient instrumental parts. They're not over done, and aren't just used as an intro to a few tracks. They weave their way in and out of the tracks whilst not interfering with the heaviness. They use a female vocalist too here and there for extra ancient atmosphere.
One down side to this though, by track 8 the relentlessness and brutality of it wears you down after a while and just as you're about to go for the 'off' button to give your ears a quick rest, those Pesky Italians keep throwing in more catchy, effective and interesting verses and you can't help but carry on listening. By the time it's finished it feels like you've done a few rounds in the arena.
This gets a massive Imperial
thumbs up for the victor !!