Wednesday, March 12, 2014

"Reptilian Agenda" by Embryonic Devourment

From Willits, Ca.we get the brutal death metal group, Embryonic Devourment. What is it with death metal bands coming out of temperate climates? Seriously, there is no serious death metal scene in Winnipeg, Man.

You'd think up there with the temperature routinely reaching minus 40F(C) that there would be just dozens of angry metal fans ready to spread their wings and scream against nature, but apparently not.

The group formed in 2003 and released the Beheaded by Volition EP and released their first full length album in 2008, Fear of Reality Exceeds Fantasy. The CD of the hour today is their first release in nearly four years. They have released nothing since 2010's Vivid Interpretations of the Void. They certainly do know how to craft a catchy album title don't they?

I like it when metal bands look metal.
Now that their past has been discussed, let's move on to their present: Repilian Agenda.

This band has been described as technical death metal, brutal death metal, but to these ears, they are a classic American death metal band which leans heavily into the Tampa Style.

The biggest difference between Embryonic Devourment and Death, Deicide, etc is the guitar work.

Instead of powerchords played at the speed of sound or single note riffs played hyper-doubled picked a la Morbid Angel, their guitarwork feels more like the Iron Maiden feel. Lots of single notes, but in a melody style instead of a riffing style all the time leaving the bass and the drums to fill in the heavy, which they do.

In spades.

There are some very nice melodic solos throughout this record. There is no face melting, but much more craft. It is a refreshing change to have songs within a song instead of the buzzing bee all the time. The bass is also a refreshing change on this album. It's high enough in the mix that it actually can be heard and felt.

The drumming is the only issue with this otherwise flawless death record. On a few of the songs, drummer, Luke Boutiette, really channels the formerly metal as all hell, Pete "Commando" Sandoval. That in and of itself is totally cool because Pete was the drummer to define death metal drumming to me, but the over the top double snaring high up in the mix drowns out the nuance of the riffing, but that's a production error and not a musical one.

All in all, this is a very good record.

Release: 2/18/14
Genre: Metal, Death Metal
Label: Deepsend Records
Run time: 30:07
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Track list:
1) Challenging All Forms of Hope
2) Masonic Angeldust
3) Reptiliphiliac
4) Experimental Deforemation
5) Suffer the Seas of Gore
6) Sealed with Resion
7) Whilst the Rich Dine
8) Blood Gift

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