Unmerciful really needs no introduction for brutal death metal fans around the world. The band was created in 2001 by Clint Appelhanz, who was also an original member of the band Origin. Another ex-Origin member eventually joined in 2005, just in time for their fantastic debut album in 2006 Unmercifully Beaten, Jeremy Turner and the duo had found each other again laying the foundation that would become one of the most solid brutal death metal bands around. There has been some turmoil in the line-up during the years were especially the vocal spot has been hard on the band with Joshua Riley being the sixth vocalist they have. Line-up changes aside Unmerciful has released two very strong albums during their time and obviously I expected their 3rd album Wrath Encompassed being yet another excellent addition to their growing discography.
Pummelling your skull with a fierce fury Unmerciful is here to deliver the goods of hard hitting riffs. The album never slows down nor lack focus and Wrath Encompassed is an even better output than their latest, also superb, Ravenous Impulse. The new members Joshua Riley on vocals and Trynt Kelly (Marasmus & The Messiah Complex) on drums kick some serious ass and in all honesty I even think Riley is the best vocalist they’ve had (his range is insane) so I hope he will be a long-time member of Unmerciful. Kelley, a.k.a Sgt. Blast, does a fine job replacing John Longstreth (Origin, Hate Eternal (live), ex-Gorguts) which was something I was worried for seeing Longstreth is one of the best drummers in the world in my opinion. Hard to replace of course but Kelley makes a valid effort for you to forget all about Longstreth.
There is nothing on Wrath Encompassed that’s left for granted and Unmerciful has once again shown they are a band that’s symbolic for high standard. The production is the best they’ve had yet, likewise on the vocals front and the rest is just as good as you remember it from Ravenous Impulse. Fans of Unmerciful can sleep well tonight knowing the band never slows down, always work hard and always delivers what they promise. Intense, angry, and destructive brutal technical death metal of the highest quality. This is an album I will have with me at every gym session for those extra gains!