This is the fourth album by this American quartet hailing from New Hampshire, and no, I hadn’t heard of them before the CD landed on my desk either.
After a couple of rapid drum rolls by Jeff Saltzman, “Threshold” has Jim Gregory and Ryan Beevers guitars thrown in the mix to pound your eardrums further, but somehow the tempering of the lead is a thing of beauty in all the chaos.
It’s weird how something as heavy as “Lake of Extinction” can also feel allegro, but somehow the second guitar manages to give the song a bit of levity that Jeff DeMarco’s angry vocals are lacking. The piano outro is eerie to say the least/
DeMarco’s vocals are as low as his bass sound on “Servile”, and he can maintain a hoarse scream for quite some time prior to the guitars building up after a brief sojourn into near acoustic territory.
The first single from the album, “Synthon”, can be found below if you’d like to give it a listen, and you’ll find it on the mellower end of the spectrum when compared to other tracks, but still full of heavy riffs and rather evocatively played leads.
The moody and gloomy “A Gathering of Storms” is full of buzzing bass and long, low, drawn out growls accompanied by exquisite female vocals by Haydee Irizarry of Carnivora to make the doom track even more haunting. The less raspy death vocals on the track are by Cryptopsy frontman Matt McGachy.
The cover of Epidemic’s “Factor Red” is a touch slower but a bucket load heavier than the original, yes I went and found it to do a comparison, with the vocals even more acerbic if that’s possible.
Saltzman’s footwork on “Dysmorphic” is extremely impressive, as he manages to keep a constant barrage going while flailing his arms around to give us some seriously intricate drum rolls and timing changes to work the guitars and keep the lead rather interesting.
After the misleading first 30 seconds where “Chemical Reagent” appears it’s going to be a mellow track, the vocals roar in, followed by the guitars and drums, the song then alternates between manic and malleable with a rather flowing lead.
Heavy but slowish guitar riffs are punctuated by the long growls on “Fiery the Angels Fell” before the pace changes abruptly and the blasts are littered by rabid riffs with a snappy lead played by Phil Tougas of Chthe’ilist.
Ending the album on a rather heavy note, “A Tongue to Taste the Collapse” is filled with flairy leads over intensely packed riffs that leave no room for timing mistakes, whatsoever.
While there are moments of sheer oppression on the album, owing to the heaviness of the sound, it’s still musical in its extreme nature and should definitely keep many a death metal fan happy upon giving it a spin.
(8/10 Marco Gaminara)