Demonical – Mass Destroyer

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Swedish death metal band Demonical has set a specific interval of two years between each of its studio albums. After pioneering the new generation of old school death metal, their musical signature has continued to remain flawless and their seventh studio album 'Mass Destroyer' sums up the experience that fans can expect from these veterans. The lineup is led by Martin Schulman (bass), Ronnie Bergerstål (drums), Johan Haglund (rhythm guitars), Eki Kumpulainen (lead guitars) and Christofer Säterdal (vocals).

The storming performance of the quintet on the opening track ‘We Conquer The Throne’ focuses heavily on its wall of sound and shredding solos. The blaze of the guitar rages on like wildfire within your face, followed by battering drums and catchy melodies perfectly captured by the buzz saw guitars. In a pure exhibition of raw death metal, the album showcases formidable strength and violence that would expound the brutal direction of the band. Unlike on its predecessor ‘World Domination’, the songwriting here stems from their classic trademarks that have been accumulated for years. The Swedish veterans keep a high pace, managing to sound brutal and relentless with songs like ‘Sun Blackened’. The tempo moves at a breakneck speed and the production is top-notch. The whirlwind of the incendiary riffs played loud as fuck, the roaring growls injecting violence, there’s so much swaggering from the guitar department.

Mass Destroyer’ offers the rapid style of classic Swedish death metal, evoking bands like Dismember, Entombed and Centinex. The new album gives us definitive old-school literature in its most brutal violent execution. Since the band doesn’t intend to reinvent themselves, the songs lean towards the conventional elements of Stockholm death metal. There are plenty of monstrous riffs, explosive guitar solos and grooves thickened by the gigantic slab of the drums. One of the major strengths of ‘Mass Destroyer’ is its organic raw old-school exercise and the gripping effect of the HM-2 guitars making the songs loud as hell. Demonical has somehow reformed their song composition on the new album.

Giving a tight performance, there is an evil nature to songs like ‘Fallen Mountain’ where Demonical shows some pure aggression that would remind many of the early death metal scene. The crushing sound of the galloping drums and the fiendish growls in my opinion fits with this onslaught of grooves. What is brought here is the raw brutality that many modern death metal bands lack today. The quintet has managed to write some gritty songs, packed full of onslaught guitar riffs. There are moments when the lead guitar emphasizes that infectious quality, that would also include a monstrous guitar tone alongside solos and catchy melodies .

In songs like ‘Wrathspawn’ the thunderbolt of the solid riffing move into a rampaging d-beat assault. While the past albums like ‘Servants of the Unlight’ and ‘Hellsworn’ were already acclaimed as the band’s best output, ‘Mass Destroyer’ is Demonical’s strongest album in the past decade. The performance is infallible. Especially the growls of Christofer Säterdal sound much better this time hence giving the songs a powerful effect. Martin Schulman and Ronnie Bergerstål managed to apply an organic feel to the songwriting, while Eki Kumpulainen unleashes bludgeoning brutality in a raw manner. The colossal rebound of the percussion and the razor-sharp tremolos culminate into a massive burst of thunder on ‘Dödsmarsch’ which reeks of forceful riffs.

Grinding drums build on powerful tempos with those remarkable melodies and guitar solos shrewdly inserted into the mix. Many riffs on the album sound like they’re derived straight off of Dismember’s ‘Like an Ever Flowing Stream’ and Entombed‘s ‘Clandestine’ . ‘Mass Destroyer’ is the result of a songwriting genius that proves that Demonical has kept its raw sinister core sound intact. The opening melodic riff on ‘Lifeslave’ makes it one of the most memorable songs on the album.

There are no signs of slowing down during its run of 33 minutes as the band unleashes sheer riffing intensity and solid, pounding drums are lifted by catchy choruses. ‘Cemented in Ire’ takes on energetic passion. ‘By Hatred Bound’ delivers a series of bludgeoning drums with catchy choruses. Combined with the frenzy solos the song makes a foray into melodic death metal. This is the most melodic track on the album.

 

REVIEW SCORE

  • Music / Songwriting 9/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 9/10
  • Mix / Production 6/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 9/10
  • Originality 8/10
8.2

There are many rivals like Bloodbath and LIK that aspire to sit atop the throne of Swedish death metal, but Demonical seems to raise the bar with every studio album.

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