Abduction – All Pain As Penance (Black Metal)

One-man black metal project from the UK Abduction is back with the third full-length album in just as many years, a very active project to say the least. Created by Phil Illsley (Taken by the Tide, ex- Lordaeron) in what I believe would be 2016 (no real data anywhere that I can find other than that the first demo was released in October 2016) Phil has been quick to craft more and more music. Funny fact for us metal gamers but his old death metal band Lordaeron is indeed named after the Warcraft kingdom and the lyrical theme revolved around Warcraft lore. Abduction is far from that though as here we got black metal of the cosmic kind.

Having had no previous experience with Abduction I jumped with into All Pain As Penance not really knowing what to expect. One thing I was a bit afraid off is the sheer amount of albums he has put out, would that affect the quality or not? What I can tell you is that All Pain As Penance is a fine release, were fans of Mgła, Uada and Behexen will feel right at home (albeit Abdication has a different lyrical theme approach). It’s haunting melodies will trap you in its web just to consume your soul into the vast abyss. I also need to recommend the different parts at play here for a solo project. The vocals are just as raucous as one can expect when it comes to black metal, while the drums and guitar are working so well together you could think it was trance. I always find it astonishing when all this is made from one person, where none of the elements are the weak link and even the production is perfectly mixed. When it all ends in the monumental track that is “The Funeral of Cosmic Mastery” I almost get goosebumps.

I will be honest with you metal gamers. All Pain As Penance almost made me fall of my seat one its first spin, there is so much clicking with me here I have a hard time knowing where to start. I will start by saying Abduction checks every box I usually look for in black metal, a spiritual journey that almost makes me have an outer body experience. I can only imagine hearing this live, experiencing the same kind of transcendence like when Mgła or Uada perform. Production value that just hits the rights spots and memorable songs I will be listening to for a long time coming. I haven’t been able to put this record away since I started listening to it a week ago, that alone speaks for itself. It’s a joy to my ears with only the likes of previously mentioned Uada and Mgła (can they please release something new soon!?) can beat and Abduction has now found a new fan.

Written by J.B.

Label: Inferna Profundus Records
For fans of: Mgła and Uada
Release date: March 29th, 2019
Favorite song: The Funeral of Cosmic Mastery
Score: 4.5/5 Near perfect

Super Mario Odyssey

It’s been quite some time since I reviewed a game now. Truth be told I’ve played five games at once and only know starting to finish up some of them. Funny thing is Super Mario Odyssey wasn’t even a game I was going to start with yet but one little test run and I was hooked and couldn’t stop playing it. I haven’t played a Mario game since Super Mario Sunshine on the Gamecube, basically because that was the last Nintendo console I’ve owned since I recently bought a Switch. Damn have I been missing out….

My top three Mario games have been Super Mario World, Super Mario Bros 3 and Super Mario Sunshine for a long time (disclaimer I never owned a Nintendo 64). Now you can take out Sunshine from that list as Odyssey is the best 3D Mario game I’ve ever played. Platform perfection which is so much fun to play, got a lot of easter eggs all the game through for us old fans of the series and is simply put a perfect example on what makes Nintendo is all about. Creating beautiful worlds, fun gameplay, easy to get into but also takes some skill and wit to master in order to collect everything in game (which you of course want to when it’s so much fun).

Nintendo Switch is my first Nintendo console since the Gamecube with Super Mario Odyssey being my first experience. What a comeback it has been! Nintendo is back in my heart again, Mario is the king of platform and I honestly wonder why I ever left the Nintendo world in the first place. My inner child is filled with joy and this is what gaming is all about, pure fun and no bullshit!

Pros

  • Beautiful and varied worlds.
  • All the easter eggs.

Cons

  • Can be a bit annoying to maneuver the camera at times.
  • While the story has never been Mario’s strong point I was hoping for a bit better one.

Graphics: 4/5
Music: 4/5
Gameplay: 4.5/5
Story: 3/5
Score: 4/5 Incredible

Interview: Wretched Fate

After a great debut album the Swedish death metal band Wretched Fate has been on many death metal lovers minds. Questions like “how did the band start?”, “what’s influenced Wretched Fate when creating Fleshletting?”, “what’s brewing in Sweden to make a lot of new quality death metal bands emerge as of late?” and more needs to be answered! Turn in for The Metal Gamer’s biggest interview yet!

A lot of you guys share a past in Non Divine Sun. How did Wretched Fate start from that?

Adrian;
Non Divine Sun consisted of five rather stubborn wills, constantly pulling in different directions.

Mats did most of the writing together with drummer Leo Collett (Mass Murder Agenda) but was always held back by differing opinions, my lack of skills as a guitar player, etc. Non Divine Sun’s best songs are actually the ones we wrote after the release of the debut album, but since Leo moved to Stockholm we split up after some time and that left us at a musically anti-climactic point. Since I’d heard some of the other stuff Mats had written before and during the Non Divine Sun era, I knew he was an amazing composer as long as he was creating without any restrictions. In the summer of 2016 I had an obsession with the Swedish evolution of metal after reading some books on the subject. I told Mats I wanted him to write some death metal as an homage to the 80’s/90’s era of Swedish death metal. Besides using a Boss HM-2 and allowing me to do the vocals I told him he would have more or less free rein over the song. That’s how we wrote “Only Death to Abide” and from there things just kind of took off on their own, Mats would get inspired and keep writing songs and I’d make the trip up from Örebro to Dalarna to lay down some vocals.

Robin;
As Adrian mentioned, all of us where pulling in different directions, which caused disturbance within the band, and when Leo moved to Stockholm and joined Mass Murder Agenda, I don’t think anyone of us had any major motivation to continue with Non Divine Sun anymore. So naturally, we just dissolved. Shortly after that, I joined Incised where Samuel play the drums, and Adrian and Mats started to write the first songs of what would later become Wretched Fate.

I remember hanging out one night with Mats and Adrian at Mats’ place when they had just finished writing “Only Death to Abide” and were working on “Embedded in Flesh”. They played the songs for me for the first time and I got hooked immediately. They seemed really fun to play too, so Mats showed me some of the bass work, just for the fun of it. After that, I was completely sold, so as soon they would finish writing a song, I would show up at Mats’ place and learn the bass stuff. I think we started talking about the possibility to turn it into a full band around early 2017.

We just needed a drummer. And since I was also a member of Incised, I thought it would be a great idea to add Samuel to the Wretched Fate lineup. I suggested it to Mats and Adrian, they agreed and, in the summer of 2017, the four of us went to Gefle Metal Festival together. We had a couple of beers, talked about it with Samuel and he was on board straight away. After that, everything just fell into place and here we are!

Personally, I think your debut Fleshletting was a very strong one, one of the best releases early on in the year. How long was it in the making?

Adrian;
We wrote, recorded and produced “Fleshletting” during a two-year period between 2016 and 2018. Most of the album was recorded in the summer of 2017. Mats and I would grind at our day jobs and do some writing and record the album during the nights. I would get up rather early in the morning, get off from work at 6 or 7, immediately go to Mats’ place and record some vocals. We would stop at about 10 o’clock since the neighbors would complain otherwise, so we had a tight schedule. It was quite hectic, I would pass out on a thin mattress on the floor in the studio every other night while Mats was mixing and tweaking.

Speaking of Fleshletting the reception seems to have been going really well for it. Did it exceed your expectations or did you from the start think this album would be a sort of a sleeper hit within the death metal community?

Adrian;
It’s definitely been overwhelming thus far. We knew from the beginning that we’re in tough competition with a myriad of other bands, so the reception has been great! Our label has been doing an excellent job with promoting our debut, which we’re very thankful for.

You’re signed with Redefining Darkness Records, a label I think is on the rise. How did you get in touch with one another?

Adrian;
We were actually supposed to release via a Swedish label, but things didn’t really take off and we started reaching out to multiple labels. I started sending some emails, filling in contact forms and such, with a demo attached. The only problem was that I mistyped our email address and so any response would bounce. Thomas at Redefining Darkness Records figured he should get in touch with us via our Facebook and that’s where we’re at now!

Swedish death metal seems to be having a new era with a lot of new bands spawning, you being one of those. Why do you think there is a new wave coming at this time?

Adrian;
That’s a really great question! I personally think that a lot of metal has become very formulaic. There seems to be this collective idea of how a modern metal tone should sound, it’s really polished, and it feels like it’s lacking some of that aggression and rawness. I’d say overall that there are lots of mixes sounding overworked nowadays. On the other hand, I sometimes feel that the new “formula” is throwing in some HM-2 in there and then that’s it. But you really have to utilize the HM-2, and even though I like hard-hitting punk riffs and d-beats they become quite stale after a while.

Robin;
Due to our age, we didn’t get to experience the full bloom of the Swedish death metal scene in the late 80’s and 90’s, so this is as close to it as we get. I believe it’s a generation thing, really.

I mean, many of the “greats” of the Swedish death genre have split up or quit and I think it’s only natural for the next generation to pick up the torch in order to keep that flame alive, so to speak.

What bands has influenced you guys the most when creating Fleshletting?

Adrian;
The most obvious influence is Bloodbath, I’d say. Though I was completely mesmerized with Dismember in 2016 so that’s definitely had an effect on me. Considering the vocals, we worked hard with the articulation and so Mikael Åkerfeldt was of great inspiration. There’s definitely some Peter Tägtgren and George Fisher influences in there as well.

Mats;
Other than the ones Adrian mentioned I’d say Vomitory is a huge influence when it comes to the relentless energy. And whether or not I do it on purpose there’s always a touch of At the Gates in my riffs.

If you were stuck on a deserted island and could bring one album with you, which one would it be and why?

Adrian;
Slaughter of The Soul. It’s got more or less everything, from rage and aggression to melancholy and some real beauty to it. The lyrics are absolutely fantastic as well with some interesting themes. I think At The Gates really captured the atmosphere of Swedish winter on that record and it kind of feels like the soundtrack to our society as a whole. I guess it would remind me of home, for better or worse! REINKAΩS by Dissection is also a strong contender though. I think you’ve really come up with something great when you manage to conjure a version of death metal that’s just beautiful, awe-inspiring and that has you absolutely spellbound. God of Forbidden Light is a great example of this. The whole album really inspires you to delve into some mythology as well, which is always welcome in my book!

Mats;
It would have to be Get Lucky by Mark Knopfler. It’s one of my all-time favorite records and it’s been that for quite some time. The way Mark tells stories with his songs together with how he writes the music really speaks to me and I never seem to get tired of him. Great music for road trips!

Samuel;
Probably Blackwater Park by Opeth. It’s one of those records and band that changed and shaped my view of music and creativity. I was so blown away by all their songs in my early teens that I became a real prog/metal snob. If the song wasn’t 10 minutes long and contained growls and clean vocals it was not advanced enough!

Also, Martin Lopez, their former drummer, has been a huge inspiration for me since I heard him on Opeth’srecords.

Robin;
Ah man, that’s a tough one! I would have to agree with Adrian about Slaughter of The Soul. However, I think if it really comes down to choosing one, single album, I will have to say Dance of Death by Iron Maiden. Simply because it was the first metal album that I ever owned, so it has huge sentimental value to me. Plus, it’s a fantastic album! Either that or Nightmares Made Flesh by Bloodbath because that eerie, nasty sound just speaks to me. Everything on that album is so well made from top to bottom, and with Peter Tägtgren on vocals at that. There is just something about his strength, deepness and rage on that album that really gets me going – The lows, the highs and the hardcore screams; the whole thing is just great.

Will we see Wretched Fate going on a tour this year?

Adrian;
First of all, we’re ripping of a gig at Gamrocken Festival 2019. We’re hoping that a strong performance at Gamrocken will help in kickstarting bookings and tours now that the album is out and we can focus on other things than the promotion.

Robin;
We’ve been pretty busy with the release of the album and everything around it up until now, but as Adrian said, now that the album’s finally out, we are so ready to get out there, and play as many live shows as possible. With that being said, I don’t think we’ll be going on any tour this year, or at least not for the coming six months. But hey, who knows? We’ll see what happens. Keep your eyes peeled!

What’s next for Wretched Fate? I know Fleshletting just got released but are you already working on a new album?

Mats;
There are a couple of songs written. We can’t really say we have started working on an album yet, but songs are growing and riffs are always being written here.

Adrian;
So far, I’ve only just started with the “research” for upcoming lyrics. I get tons of ideas that all of a sudden pop into my head every now and then though, and I feel the lyrics will be a lot easier to write this time around. The creation of “Fleshletting” required somewhere about two years of our time so I would expect the same for the next record. If I were to guess I’d say we’ll write the next record parallel with live shows as well.

I need to know, do we got any metal gamers in Wretched Fate? If so what games are your favorites?

Adrian;
Definitely. I’m a sucker for DOOM, especially the 2016 revival! It pretty much sums up death metal as a genre and translates it into a game. I’m a big fan of YouTubers Accursed Farms and Ahoy as well, the latter which produces excellent documentaries on retro-gaming, such as the original DOOM for instance. Other than that, I think the Dark Souls franchise is fantastic. The gameplay is great (most of the time) and the scenery, atmosphere and soundtracks are very immersive. Who can resist the monstrous melancholy of the “Firelink Shrine”-themes? I also really enjoy horror games such as Amnesia, Dead Space and Outlast.

Mats;
I don’t consider myself a gamer anymore, but I used to be a big one. I grew up on Age of Empires 1 & 2 and the Grand Theft Auto franchise and in my late teens I got really into Half-Life 2. I have a lot of nostalgia for the Zelda games on N64 and GameCube and I really love those games. Like a lot of people, I have my fair share of hours put into Counter-Strike: GO but all that game stuff is not for me anymore. Now I just hoard old and new consoles and games and make other people play them I guess, ha-ha.

Samuel;
Just like Mats I’m not a gamer in its rightful meaning anymore.  I usually just “game and chill” when the evening comes. I’m a huge sucker for RPG so I’ve played a lot of The Witcher: Wild Hunt. Probably the best single player RPG I’ve ever played. Looking forward to Cyberpunk 2077!

Robin;
Yeah for sure. I play a little bit of everything. I used to play games like Counter Strike, PUBG and Overwatch, but lately I’ve been getting into a lot of the newer fighter games, like Tekken 7 and SoulCalibur 6. I’m really looking forward to Mortal Kombat 11 as well. However, my favorite games of all times are Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic (2003) and Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords (2004), both of which I got with my first Xbox, back in 2004. The story, the scenery, the graphics, the gameplay – It’s all amazing. They still hold up really well today, too. I’ve probably finished them around 20 times in total over the years and every time I play them, to this day, I still discover new things in the game.

Thanks for your time! That’s all the questions I had, any last words?

Thank you very much for having us! Make sure to check out our Facebook and Instagram and to get your hands on “Fleshletting” at Redefining Darkness Records! See you at Gamrocken Festival, May 31st, 2019!

Frosthelm – Pyrrhic (Black/Thrash Metal)

One of the biggest surprises to me in 2016 was the debut from Frosthelm with their The Endless Winter album that kicked some serious ass. Their black/thrash take on metal had the coldness of Norwegian black metal, where I at times even thought it had some Taake influences, fused with the speed and aggression of thrash. Fans of Skeletonwitch and Aura Noir rejoiced over this offering and the wait for a sophomore album has been long but now it’s finally here!

On my first listen it strikes me quick that Pyrrhic lacks the same aggression and speed their debut had but here is a band that is willing to try something new already on the sophomore album. It isn’t a home run but it’s growing with each listen, you just need to give it time to take in all the influences and lyrics. While I liked their approach on the debut this is a different beast all together, which still has the core from The Endless Winter intact. Production is of a much higher level than the debut, which works in its favor for most of the part but at the same time I enjoy the more dirty production for this type of metal. It’s not over-produced by all means but personally the production was a big part which made me love The Endless Winter, listen to “Silent and Dark, the Everlastning Sky” as an example. However as I stated Pyrrhic is a step away from The Endless Winter so on this album it surely works for its purpose. On a side note the album art is stunning! Raymond Swanland is a name I am going to follow from now on, the artwork alone makes me want to buy an LP version of the album.

Tracks like “A Gift of Razors”, “The Sorceress” and “Pisslord” are definitely some highlights that I will take with me (while I also got to add “Immortal Nightfall/A Dreamless Lust” is growing on me as I write this). Those are songs where I think the black and thrash elements shines in their own rights, where the production does it justice and riffs are as mighty as Satan himself. I respect Frosthelm for trying some new turns on Pyrrhic, and in many ways they have succeeded, but they are not quite there yet. A good album that I might change my mind on down the road but right now I think they tried a bit too much with Pyrrhic and I liked the more simple approach (less is more) on The Endless Winter.

Written by J.B.

Label: Revenger Records
For fans of: Skeletonwitch and Aura Noir
Release date: March 23rd, 2019
Favorite song: The Sorceress
Score: 3/5 Good

Interview: Unfathomable Ruination

It’s been close to three years now since the modern brutal techdeath classic Finitude from Unfathomable Ruination saw the light of day. It was time to check in with vocalist and fellow gamer Ben Wright for a talk!

I want to start by asking some of your metal history. How did you get into metal and what made you start doing vocals? Any specific band/vocalist that got you into it?

I first saw a band on TV that looked pretty crazy, there was 8 dudes jumping around bashing shit with masks on so I checked them out, bought a CD and was hooked. It was the vocals that got me first, after that I just kept discovering heavier and heavier bands, I then found a CD in a store with some skulls on it and thought that looked pretty rad and it turned out to be hammer smashed face, that blew my fucking mind and since then I knew I wanted to be in a band, Chris Barnes and John Gallagher were my main inspiration to start vocals, I tried my best to emulate them as a kid.

You were a part of the band Fleshrot for many years until the split-up. I noticed a couple of the members, including you, are current or ex-members of Unfathomable Ruination. Was that how you got into the band?

Me and Dan go way back, he played in some local bands that played with Fleshrot at times and we got speaking through that, he ended up being our guitarist for a short while and we stayed in touch, he randomly sent me a message one day asking if I wanted to jam with UR and the rest is history! To this day he regrets sending me that text! Haha!

Unfathomable Ruination has risen very fast in the ranks of death metal with every release receiving amazing reviews. How has this affected you as a band?

I’m not sure it has, really? Were still a bunch of drunk retards who like making loud noises together! I’d say if it was to have any affect I guess it has made us more and more hungry each time to up the anti, keep on progressing and writing heavier, more technical, and powerful music.

Finitude is in my personal opinion one of the best brutal techdeath albums made in years, how will you top that on your next release. What can we expect from it?

Thanks man! I was really proud of all of us for that album, I’m not sure how we’re going to top it!? We have for sure set the bar high for ourselves! It’s been a really organic process writing for the new album, the material we are churning out is ridiculous! I’m pretty sure you guys are gonna dig it.

How far in development of the upcoming album are you? Can we hope for a 2019 release?

We recently announced the artist who is creating the cover art, Eliran Kantor. The album is in full swing, many cogs are turning! You’ll have to stay tuned for further updates but I can say we are expecting a 2019 release, yes.

You recently went on tour with Aborted, Cryptopsy and Ingested. How was it?

Insane. The shows were packed and it was great to tour the UK again as we hadn’t done that since the Malignancy tour a few years back, Ingested are old friends of ours so it’s always a pleasure hanging with those guys, it was amazing to watch Aborted, they really are a spectacle live, the stage show, the tightness, the props, it was awesome! The Cryptopsy guys were top blokes and great fun to party with.

Do you have any tours planned for 2019?

There a couple of ideas being thrown around at the moment, nothing set in stone currently. We are focussing most of our efforts on the album. We do have a few shows in and around Europe throughout the year, Brutal Assault & Kaltenbach etc.

As I know you like to hit the gym, what bands do you usually spin to get you doing that extra rep? Any special album even?

For me, anything with a good groove/rythm. I find that super techy or fast stuff kicks me out of sync! My last session I was spinning “Suffokate – return to despair” its got a perfect pace to it! And the new Whitechapel track, Brimstone gets me PUUUMPED!!

As a fellow gamer, what’s your favorite game of all time?

Wow that’s a ridiculously hard question!! I’d have to say if I was forced to choose, for its nostalgic value, and the fact it’s on my favourite console and my favourite movie series, Star Wars – Rogue Squadron on the N64. I’ll never forget the pure excitement as a kid flying an X wing around destroying tie fighters!!

Cheers for your time Ben! Any parting words?

No worries bro! Stay tuned for the new album, its going to be immense!! Add me up on Steam if ya wanna get owned on PUBG! Benrot138

Interview: Klysma

Klysma, a band that disbanded in 2015 before even playing their first show, resurrected in 2017 and from out of nowhere made a splash in the brutal death metal scene with their full-length debut album Sick. Sick has paved the way for Klysma who are now considered one of the hot upcoming bands in the scene. With a new album in the making it was the perfect time to grab a hold of the creator of Klysma Roy Feyen as we discuss the history, present, future of the band and of course gaming!

First of all congratulations on one of the sickest (pun intended) albums in 2018! Tell me what’s the story behind Klysma and what made you put the band to rest in 2015 before picking it up in 2017?

Thanks a lot! I founded Klysma with a couple of friends who wanted to make music. Our music tastes were quite different so we decided to go for Goregrind, since we all kinda liked that. Ofcourse, with different tastes, and different motivations, things didn’t last long, and we split up before our first gig.

I brought new life into Klysma after getting some help setting up my record setup. I recorded the EP like we planned with the original lineup, with some minor changes. I mixed and mastered it myself, as a learning curve for other projects. It wasn’t very good, but I was happy with the results nonetheless. 

You’re signed to Ghastly Music, a Japanese label. How did that happen? Was it due to Jason Lambert and his Putrified J connection with the label?

Yes it was. Jason suggested to try to sign with them, and he took care of it.

How long was Sick in progress and what influenced you along the way?

After the split with the original lineup, I continued to write from Klysma, not knowing if I would ever do something with it or not, but I just enjoyed writing music. I didn’t want a straightforward Goregrind band, so I incorporated some groovy and slamming riffs with the typical Gutalax inspired humpa lumpa riffs.

A fun fact about the “Sick” album is that we almost decided to skip it entirely. Since I continued writing, I already had a second full length album completely written. It’s definitely better and more serious than the “Sick” album, but I decided to record the “Sick” album anyway, as a means of promotion for the next album. I never expected it to do so well.

I want to know one thing. On the song “A Thousand Rotting Corpses” you use Kirby theme music at the end, who was behind this awesome choice!?

Most of the songs of the “Sick” album were written around the time the original lineup split up. Before I wanted a more serious approach to the music, I incorporated some funny samples or riffs based on funny things. I ended up scrapping most of them. Kirby was a game I was very fond of as a child, so I kept that one. I also had a song with The Simpsons theme in it amongst others.

Might be a dumb follow-up question but does anyone in Klysma game? If you got any favorite game of all time?

I think non of us are hardcore gamers, but most do game sometimes. I recently bought a Nintendo Switch, and I’m playing Zelda right now. It’s hard to pick a favorite game, but if I had to pick a favorite game series it’d be Fire Emblem.

Since Klysma got resurrected with a full line-up you’ve been very active with an EP and a full-length release in two years. Will we perhaps see a new release this year already?

I’m not sure if it’ll get released this year, but I’m definitely planning on recording it soon. I’m pretty stoked to release this, especially after the surprising succes of the last album.

Both you and the rest of the band have commitments in other bands, yet Klysma is very active in itself. How do you guys find the time to get it all going?

Most of the time we just wing it, and it just happens to work out haha. We also decided to take less gigs. I’ve come to a point where I want to skip the smaller gigs, and where I feel like we can, and only take on the bigger gigs and festivals. I think it’s possible due the “succes” of our other projects, and how we are seen in the scene, amongst the surprising succes of the “Sick” album.

On Sick you have a lot of great musicians from bands like Devour the Fetus and Scordatura featuring. Will that be a common thing on Klysma albums even in the future?

I hope so! All of the features are friends I met during the years through other bands etc. I love working with different musicians, so it’s my kind of way of collaborating with them, and giving them a shout-out. Definitely go check out their bands if you don’t know them, all of them are amazing! In return ofcourse, they also helped promoting the album, and I’m very grateful for that.

If you had to pick your favorite albums of all time which would you pick?

Oh man, this is a tough one. There are so many good bands out there. It’s really impossible to pick a favorite for me. If I had to pick an album that inspired me the most tho, it would probably be Abominable Putridity’s “The Anomalies Of Artificial Origin”. Or maybe “The Time Of Great Purification” by Pathology.

Just saw you’re going on UK tour with Embrace Your Punishment and Untethered, sweet package there! Will we see Klysma going on tours in the rest of Europe too?

We don’t really have plans to tour with Klysma. The reason why we’re doing this UK weekender is simply because we’ve been there with other bands before, and we wanted to go back since we had a lot of fun there. We decided to do a weekender to make the travel worthwhile.

That’s all I got for this time. Thanks for your time! Got any final shoutouts to end this?

No problem at all! Thank you for the interest! I’d say keep an eye out for our other bands; Human Vivisection, Human Barbecue, Defenestration, Jintai Setsudan, Putrified J, Neuromoral Dissonance, Necrotic Resurrection, Impure Violation, and Brutal Sphincter. (Yeah those are a LOT of bands.) We got loads of new music coming soon, amongst them Human Barbecue, which I’m doing with Klysma’s vocalist Jason. Expect a new album this year. Thank you, and take care!

Bleeding Utopia – Where the Light Comes to Die (Melodic Death Metal)

Welcome to hell! With a child choirs singing and eventually ending with the words “welcome to hell” the stage is set when the opener “Ascendants of Hate” kicks off in great fashion. What’s Bleeding Utopia’s game all about you ask? It’s straight up Swedish death metal of the more melodic kind. The same kind of metal you hear from newer Evocation, Centinex, Arch Enemy or Amon Amarth. Funny enough that’s some of my favorite bands within this school. In case you remember in 2017 I thought Evocation’s The Shadow Archetype was a top 5 pick, whereas Centinex Doomsday Rituals and Amon Amarth’s Jomsviking were also high up on my 2016 list! Safe to say if all falls into place Where the Light Comes to Die may just be one of my most played albums in 2019.

Guess what? It does! There is enough meaty riffs here to keep me coming back for months to come with a vocal effort from David Ahlen that’s his best yet! The album has a certain flow to it that makes it really easy to get into but also varied enough for repeatable listens. You got your groovy Amon Amarth madness tracks like “Seek Solace In Throes” and “Already Dead” with “Ascendants of Hate” leaning more towards the great, and in my opinion underrated, Desultory. To top it off there is also a sweet guest appearance by Ryan Knight (ex-Arsis, ex-The Black Dahlia Murder) on “Enhance My Wrath”.

Where the Light Comes to Die is Bleeding Utopia’s best release by far, a big step from their past offerings and the melodic side of death metal is perfectly blended with the brutal onslaught this time around. Also helps that David Ahlen has become a greater vocalist, the years of practice between Darkest Potency and Where the Light comes to Die has developed his game. The mastering and mixing is once again done by Jocke Skog (Clawfinger, Feared, After the Burial, The Haunted etc) who has outdone himself with this one. There was definitely nothing wrong with the mixing on the past albums but this is simply a bit better in all areas. Also a fun note, I use his in-game music kit when I play CS:GO! If you play CS:GO check out the “Skog – II-Headshot” kit as it’s perfect for any metal gamer out there.

You will find plenty of headbang friendly material here and for those waiting for the upcoming Amon Amarth album Berserker this is the perfect album to take for a spin in order to make the wait a bit easier. Swedish melodeath at its finest!

Written by J.B.

Label: Black Lion Records
For fans of: Amon Amarth and Evocation
Release date: March 22nd, 2019
Favorite song: Already Dead
Score: 4/5 Incredible