Friday, June 14, 2019

This Gift is a Curse : " A Throne of Ash"

I like this. Judging from how the physical album were sold out in one day maybe not a fervently as their fan base. Sure they had a swathe of atmosphere opening the album, along with some sonic moments on songs like "Gate Dweller", but they remind me of Pantera's more unbridled moments.A shade darker unless we are talking about "the Great Southern Trend kill".  Yes they are pissed. This Swedish band might be many things, but I do not hear any sludge at all. Blackened hard core is the most apt sub-genre to stack them into. "Thresholds" is a pretty convincing case for that. There is also some thrashy touches, which when mixed with the hardcore in the perfect storm of double bass creates the Pantera sound I am talking about. I am sure the Pantera comparison, which might be something some of the metal hipsters in these guys might not be able to un-hear, is not something the band really set out to do.

They are pretty preoccupied with speed and pour it on more often than not , I am just trying to key in on the cool guitar riffs buried under the explosion of sound. Things do not slow down until "Monuments For Dead Gods". Then they of course build back up with a river of double bass flowing beneath them, thus ending the Pantera comparison for a minute. The vocals have a throatier resonance to their bark, versus the more screamed approach of the album so far. The more screamed part the lyrics cut through a little better. After the ambiance leading into "Wolvking' we are back at a full throttle in your face kind of thing. This finds the songs beginning to bleed together. At that pace it is hard to make out any thing. I know I complain about bands getting too fast. I love black metal so I am not opposed to it. The problem is too many bands use it as any easy way out. This theory is proven on "I am Katharsis". By blasting right past you, there is no need to hone the finer points of song writing.

There is more grinding noise to " I am Your Black Halo". It sounds like a car accident and feels like a train wreck. "Wormwood Star" is a little darker and moodier. It does end in a crusty pounding. I wil;l give this album a 7.5, think I have not pulled any punches about what did not work for me. What worked was the sonic heaviness and the cool guitar parts. The rule aroun here is coll riffs alone does not a good song make. So that factored into the acore as well.

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