You would be forgiven if you haven’t come across German Death Metal veterans of twenty years, Into Darkness, given that ‘Sinister Demise’ is only their third full length in that period of time. However, you would also be doing yourself a grave disservice if you neglected to check out this latest offering, if you consider yourself any kind of Death Metal fan.
From the very first listen, it’s clear that this is a band that deals in quality over quantity. ‘Sinister Demise’ is a superb album, crushing, yet with enough melody and groove to give it a very listenable edge. The construction of the songs is complex and varied, grabbing your interest, and the level of musicianship is first rate, from the riff and lead work, through the relentless, yet varied, battery from the drums, to the superb gargling growl of the well-intonated vocal delivery. If that wasn’t enough, the album also includes guest appearances from members of Necrophagist, Obscura, Blotted Science, and Nervochaos.
After a brief Intro of building drone, distant riffs and a digital pulse beat, it’s straight into ‘Left Behind’, a crushing, no holds barred opening track of superb proportions; pummelling drums, swathes of riffs that hit you in waves, and vocals that peel the flesh from your face. The tempo switches rapidly and regularly, making the track a stunningly exciting listen.
The uptempo excitement continues, with ‘Throne Of A Thousand Miseries’, a superb mix of the morose and the manic, and always crushing, even midway where there is a bit of a groove .
‘True Rulers Of This World’ is a racy track that is totally addictive, with more of that wonderful brutal groove and equally brutal lyrics. A brief lead breakout is followed by a stomach churning drop-away, making it an exciting rollercoaster ride of a track.
‘Manifesto’ opening on a ‘pig squeal’ from the vocals… for me, usually a bad sign, but not here. It’s well utilised in moderation, and just heralding the arrival of a plodding riffs that suddenly burst into a spontaneous shred, before the pace assumes a more mid tempo, skull-hammering one. Midway, there is more manic shredding, with more superb “vocal squeals” and other vocalisations to close. A superb track.
The title track, ‘Sinister Demise’ opens and closes on fairly constant and consistent crushing riff work, but midway gets very interesting. There’s a rise in intensity and tempo, before a crushing plummet, which is followed by a great chunk of lead work, which escalates into a shredding squeal.
‘Human Benediction’ comes in slightly darker, dirtier, and sleazier than its predecessor, overlaid by guitar squeals and deep growling vocals. There’s a sudden tempo rise and direction change midway, with bursts of lead work before a return to the sleazier groove of earlier. An addictive and engaging listen.
Opening with a battery of drum work and vocals roars, you can’t fail to be drawn into ‘Suspended Insanity’. The onslaught from the drums continue throughout with punchy riffs and a couple of sharp tempo rises, giving a platform for the lead work to become more prominent, and there are some great backing vocal growls on this track, subtly adding a lot to the overall sound.
It’s an aural onslaught to the very end, with the tight riffing and pummelling drums on the final two tracks ‘Spiritual Remains’ with its thrashy mid point lead work, and ‘Suffering A Reality’ which also has great midpoint off-kilter riffs, and second half lead work.
Also worth a mention is the stunning hand-painted artwork by Joe Petagno (Vader, Krisiun, Autopsy). ‘Sinister Demise’ is an excellent album that I highly recommend, it’s Death Metal at its finest!!
Review: Jools Green]]>