July the 7th of the year 2018 was a sad day for the death metal community, it was a day that we came to learn about the tragic passing of the vocalist of Malevolent Creation. Brett Hoffman who was diagnosed with colon cancer and died at age of 51, was an iconic vocalist whose personal quality reflected upon the band’s enthusiasm. Throughout the early years of establishment Hoffman was known of his barking growl talents, every fan of this genre will always remember his successful role in Malevolent Creation. Albums like The Ten Commandments, Retribution and Stillborn were treated as classics in the 90’s era. Following the Millennium this prolific band never ceased to impress their fans and as result to their productivity the band then released a number of standard death metal albums.
But in search of consistency and solidness Malevolent Creation produced other fine albums in year 2000. Expanding their discography with powerful bulldozer records like Envenomed, The Will to kill, and Warkult. And with the passing of Hoffman some speculations followed on whether the band would continue without their charismatic vocalist. But guitarist Phil Fasciana who is the one remaining original member of the band decided to continue with the band’s legacy. The founding member also considered to revamp the complete line-up, and to form a stronger order so that band would live to its heritage.
Malevolent Creation has always been a productive band, yet their 12th album entitled Dead Man’s Path was one of their best outcome since the early years. The Floridian death metal giants have laid a solid foundations for their career with other former members who had given so much for this band. Now, the band has returned again setting their 13th record with the mark of the beast. With reference to their brand new album there are a many strong features which are presented on this album. The opening track End the Torture brings the dynamic ferocity which always has been one of the respectful traits of this Floridian death metal band. Surprisingly the new vocalist/guitarist Lee Wollenschlaeger (vocalist of Imperial Empire and Throne of Nails) has similar growls to Hoffman’s barking style. Moving on to the next track Mandatory Butchery takes over with relentless bludgeoning and they are straight forward here.
The 13th Beast was mixed and mastered by Dan Swano and it’s presented with a set of eleven tracks with a compelling force which are pushed to further constrain. And this is to say that the new album was put together with elements from their past work. Tracks like Agony for the Chaos and Canvas of Flesh are typical to the band’s style. The riffs are arranged with dynamic riffage of death metal with the use of tremolo patterns that provides a solid brutality. Born of Pain follows in with the same order, although the mid pacing works as a good alternative way to slow down the engines.
The guitars are being mixed with rapid thrashings to death metal, and this what gives this album its power and brutality. The 13th Beast is firmly obtained with the elements of Dead Man’s Path style. On the new album Malevolent Creation perceived to maintain the extremity and the effectiveness of their sound. My main concern was whether the band could find the right replacement to their former vocalist. But new line-up is proved to be cohesive and the new vocalist/guitarist Lee Wollenschlaeger has delivered his duty on this record.
One of the core dynamics of the band was to revive their viciousness and blast beats. My only complains about this record is that the tracks often sound alike and there are less creativity in terms of writing effectual riffs. The 13th Beast strikes with number of extreme tracks if not all, Decimated is one of the songs which was features as a single and it’s based on rapid fire riffing and blasting.
Release the Soul for instance remains as one of the very good tracks on this album. The 13th Beast is still a fair album but flows into the typical level of extremity, it’s based on angry vocals and blast beats. This album could have been way better if the band considered to slow the pace and add more creative ideas into the songs, instead of navigating at full velocity! But if you are a fan of bands like Cannibal Corpse, Monstrosity, and Sinister you will enjoy this brutal album.
Release Date: January 18th, 2019
Label: Century Media Records
1.End The Torture
3.Agony For The Chosen
4.Canvas Of Flesh
5.Born Of Pain
6.The Beast Awakened
8.Bleed Us Free
9.Knife At Hand
11.Release The Soul