I have been left indifferent to this Canadian war metallers discography previously, their unique brand of cacophonic assaults often came across as repetitive and lacking ingenuity but all that changed when I saw the band for the first time at the Netherland Deathfest in 2019 where they inflicted aural bodily harm on the crowd with considerable dexterity. It cannot be understated the power and sheer malevolent sonic force this band has live as everything now made perfect sense when I held witness to their ferocious onslaught. Zip into 2020 and the band releases their sixth full length album and their second on the French label, third if you include the EP ‘Deceiver.Diseased.Miasmic’ from 2018.
What comes across by this band apart from the sheer speed is the intricacy woven into every song as every tune is saturated with hooks, every nuance within the song writing is embedded into the explosive power that Revenge wields so potently. ‘Reaper Abyss (Real Pain)’ opens the release with no fade in, no intro just an instant detonation of enraging dementedness. Those subtle nuances appear via the sporadic changes in pace which however brief add texture to the onslaught as the opener plunges into a sludge filled gutter trawling dirge that is terrifyingly effective. Following the opener ‘Reign Power (Above All Born)’ continues the battering mayhem as the dissonant chaotic assault hints at grindcore credentials due to the speed of course.
The bass and guitar opening to ‘Salvation Smothered (Genocide Of Flock) has a crustiness due to the riffing style before the escalation to pandemonium. This is as extreme as extreme gets without becoming noise as the crazed velocity is reined in for a cool catchy phase that allows the drum beat to pound viciously. ‘Excommunication’ is a short blurring bludgeoning after the melodic start as the grinding facets rear up here enormously as my thoughts about the speed drifted to some older acts like Nausea (the pre-Terrorizer band) and the fairly obscure Nuclear Death due to the rancorous inhumanity displayed. With a slower riff ‘Self Segregation (System Torched)’ has a gnarly riff as the pace is restrained here momentarily offering some respite from the bands continual obliterating speed. Closing the album is ‘Apostasy Imposed (Takeover Mode)’ a slightly longer track with another sludgy opening and a horrifying vocal tone, something that infests this album throughout. As the song develops the diversion into blasting wrath is expected as the speed here really is insane.
Revenge are not an easy band to listen to, and I’m sure some will find this album just a complete wall of noise but if you take the time and endure the unmitigated velocity you’ll identify all the subtlety of Revenge even if it is hurled at you like a salivating rabid beast.
(8.5/10 Martin Harris)