This is the 3rd album from this American thrash quintet. They hail from Athens, Ohio, which is located about 20 miles from the state line of West Virginia. Vocalist Chance Garnett and guitarist Nate Garnett, are brothers. Chance used to sneak beers into metal concerts(some American venues don't allow alcoholic beverages) and crowd surf in the mosh pits. He is now 36 years of age and the band members all vary in age. This helps to add some diversity to the song writing, because of their different influences.
They toured for 2 years, promoting their previous album, Beyond the Permafrost
. Chance and his brother, Nate, have about one big fight each year. They get on each others nerves, when they spend so many months traveling in a van. They don't hit each other, they yell at each other, and slam things around. The brothers love each other and live at separate residences, when they are not on tour.
Their technique of songwriting starts with Nate, he will record his guitars, and also use a drum machine. From there the other band members listen and decide where the solos will go. They will tweak the songs to coincide with the rhythm of their lyrics and also make adjustments to accommodate the rhythm section, so that it suits their high standards of metal music.
This release was recorded at Studio Litho, in Seattle. This studio is owned by Pearl Jam
Gossard. The album was produced by Jack
Endino, who's produced several Seattle grunge albums, including Bleach by Nirvana
. They tried a couple of different artists to design this album's art and weren't happy with their work. They tried Andrei Bouzikov. He's a very flexible artist, they were pleased with his work, and his artwork was chosen for this album cover. This album has 12 relatively short songs. 8 of these songs are about 2 and a half minutes long, and 4 of these songs are about 3 and a half minutes long. But these songs sound longer than they really are, because they are so rich and dynamic.
The opening track, Submit To The Suffering, thrashes with an incredible speed. It contains interludes with grimmer vocals that sound like Benjamin Killeke of Neaera
. This is a misanthropic song about human torture, from the perspective of the dead. Where The Light Has Failed thrashes with extremely intricate rift shifting, that rivals even Trivium
. It is probably much faster than those bands. This song is about the allegiance with dark forces for the destruction of mankind. Released From The Catacombs
sports some tremolo guitar picking, that's played so fast, that I can only compare it to Taake
. There is a super complex double guitar duet toward the end of this song, its brilliance can be likened to a fireworks display. This song is about the resurection of the dead from the catacombs, by evil forces. It describes an ugly scenario of stinking dead flesh, flies, and rats.
Stand And Fight
is about a sword fighting in a battle. It has an unusual thrash melody, that is infused with a Scandinavian melody that sounds like Taake
. The Despoiler Of Human Life
starts off with super intricate thrashing, then it goes on with a sound like Neaera
. Then it takes on a sound similar to Witchery
, but played at twice the speed of that band. This song is about a misanthropic being, that is similar to a grim reaper. Crushed Beyond Dust
shreds at a very high speed, that would leave most thrash bands breathing their dust. I could go on with writing repetitive descriptions of each song, but this album thrashes relentlessly and each song has some sort of misanthropic theme. They were influenced by the older styles of thrash, but now they are the embodiment of a new style of thrash.
The quality of this recording is very fine. It sounds unusually crisp and clear. It's also a very loud recording. Although their previous album, Beyond the Permafrost
was an excellent album. I thought that they used a lot of old school influences, like Iron Maiden and Vivian Campbell(ex-Dio
) style guitar solos. That
's fine, but these songs on their latest album sound much more original. Their previous album was a tough album to beat, but they actually did it. This is a great thrash album. Their musical structures have improved and their songs sound a lot tighter. They've raised the bar, a few levels, on this album. It can be compared to Absu
. But I think that Skeletonwitch
sounds better than those 2 bands.