Swedish death metal bands have a big variation in sound from each other. The first wave of Swedish death metal became known of being raw and fast, with the trademark of buzz sawing guitars and HM-2 pedals. And there are other groups of Swedish death metal bands who were evolved into a more melodic style in the early nineties. What we have here is a group of musicians who have implemented a varied combination of aggression with melodic features. The Swedish veterans of melodic death/thrash metal return after three years with a new album entitled Cobra Speed Venom, setting down their eleventh album. The Crown is a well-established band in the underground metal scene and have maintained a great reputation for themselves. During their long career they have released some of the best death/thrash albums such as Hell is Here, Deathrace King and Crowned in Terror which are considered to be their finest works to date.
Founded in 1990 by bassist Magnus Olsfelt, guitarist Marko Trevonen and vocalist Johan Lindstrand. The three members named their band Crown of Thorns but had to change the name due to another band from USA. With the likes of Entombed, Dismember and At the Gates, the Swedish quintet is considered to be one of the biggest acts in Europe. Their new output Cobra Speed Venom, puts them back on the right track. The opener Destroyed by Madness incarnates the older style as the band once again is driven by energy and aggression. The scourging riffs ring with blistering sound, engaging into the full velocity of death and thrash metal!
Cobra Speed Venom is textbook The Crown: much like prior releases such as Deathrace King, the melodies and measurable techniques are and have always been the foundation of this band. Iron Crown is furious gallop executed with blast beats and harsh vocals beside the fantastic solos the track is a showcase of old school thrash metal. The new songs shaped with a rawer sound, The Crown guarantees a massive barrage and delivers amazing riffs, spicy solos and fast rhythm. The production is top notch and serves the songs very well. The Crown have always been a modern death/thrash band and Cobra Speed Venom is presented with immense extremity.
In the Name of Death has a catchy chorus and rhythmic guitar sections are activated brilliantly. Henrik Axelsson is a monster behind the drum kit and his frantic drumming is carried with fury. We Avenge! develops into rattling grooves, making this song beyond entertaining. Insane guitar riffs and whirlpool solos are delivered straight into your face. Cobra Speed Venom is an onslaught of killer performance, the track is in full intensity of artillery bombardment!
World War Machine is barbarically massive, Johan Lindstrand‘s vocals vary from vicious growls to clean vocals. Necrohammer has a mid-paced groove while Rise in Blood is overwhelmingly aggressive. The Crown has kept some surprises with the final two songs: Where My Grave Shall Stand is a three minute instrumental piece captured with exquisite melodies. The Sign of The Scythe on the other hand pumps in massively with heavy guitar riffage and pummeling drums, the ending track is focused again on melodies and grooves. Cobra Speed Venom includes ten songs and three bonus tracks, this is truly a beast of an album and very powerfully executed. Their newest achievement is becoming one of my favourite albums of this year and I won’t be surprised to see Cobra Speed Venom among the top albums of 2018.
Release date: March 16th, 2018
Label: Metal Blade Records
1.Destroyed by Madness
3.In the Name of Death
5.Cobra Speed Venom
6.World War Machine
8.Rise In Blood
9.Where My Grave Shall Stand
10.The Sign of Scythe
11.Nemesis Diamond (bonus track)
12.The Great Dying (bonus track)
13.Ride the Fire (bonus track)