Thursday, 3 April 2014

Lay Down Rotten - Deathspell Catharis (Album Review)

Album Type :  Full Length
Date Released : 24/01/2014
Label : Apostasy Records

Deathspell Catharsis, album track listing :

1). Cassandras Haunting
2). Deathspell Catharsis
3). Schädelberg
4). The Fever
5). Release Into Nothingness
6). Zombiefied Electrified
7). Among the ruins of a once glorious temple
8). Infernal Agony
9). Blood on wooden crosses
10). Blasphemous rituals for the perverted flesh

Bio :

For nearly 15 years now, Lay Down Rotten stands for energetic top notch Death Metal. Their haunting live-shows at festivals like With Full Force, Rock Harz, Extremefest, Death Feast or Summer Breeze and their concerts alongside Cannibal Corpse, Bolt Thrower, Aborted a.o. always grabbed the audience by the balls.

Their albums like „Breeding Insanity“ (Remission Records), “Gospel Of The Wretched” (Metal Blade Records) or 2012’s “Mask Of Malice” (also Metal Blade Records) have been well-received within the whole scene and the press. Now, it is time for the first sign of life from the band via their new label-home Apostasy Records!

„Deathspell Catharsis“ is the name of the new output which was once again produced by the band’s confidant Thilo Krieger in his Desert Inn Studio. The new album will definitely prove their status and the great artwork by Toshihiro Egewa (Cryptopsy, Defeated Sanity, Krisiun and many more) totally accompanies that impression.

Review :

German death metallers Lay Down Rotten are no strangers to the scene, having been around since before the turn of the millennium.  This year sees their 7th album, ‘Deathspell Catharsis’, hitting our soundscapes like a sniper’s bullet on an exposed head.  If its darkness, riffs, monster vocals and twisting solos you’re after, look no further than this fine release: it’s just the monster you’ve been waiting for. 

For starters, Lay Down Rotten are good at what they do.  Scarily good.  Without sounding like so much hyperbole, they pluck out such intricate riffs with apparent ease and make epic tracks with consummate skill and aplomb.  If I were a jealous man, I would be painted green, in a green house, green with envy.  But I’m not… not at all… anyway, these German behemoths wear their influences on their denim sleeves, Cannibal Corpse and Bolt Thrower being foremost amongst them.  Of course, there are many other delightful bands that have left their mark upon Lay Down Rotten – can you spot them all, kids? 

These ten tracks that make up ‘Deathspell Catharsis’ are hulking, brutal beasts of blasting death metal, with some grind and doom elements added to the mix for good (or bad?) measure.  ‘The Fever’ starts with a mob chant before a sinister, squirming riff writhes its way into proceedings, Jost Kleinert gutturally howling his way through the song with a madman’s fervour.  It’s a sweaty, manic, contagious piece that should infect you at the first possible opportunity.  Another track that really grabbed my attention was ‘Zombified Electrified’, a slow, guitar-driven intro which gets slammed into high gear by Timo Claas’s violent drum pounding.  For some reason, it reminds me very much of Autopsy: a slow yet relentless sonic attack, with this soul of doom and fists of death.  As it hits your head, brace yourself for some unstoppable ear-bashing. 

Now this album isn’t short on great death metal tracks, but one stood out for me as an essential song for all metal heads to hear.  ‘Blood on Wooden Crosses’ is a Slayer-esque, full-blooded head banger that simply grinds you into a fine powder and snorts you down its spike-studded nostril.  It’s at once brutally focused in its intensity and terrifyingly expansive, throwing out riffs, howls and tempo changes like so much airport luggage.  It’s a shining example of classic death metal made in the modern age.  Take a bow, guys.  You deserve it. 

‘Deathspell Catharsis’ has been made by a band with a renewed sense of purpose.  Newly-signed to Apostasy Records, Lay Down Rotten have got a point to prove, and they’ve made it with this blood-stained, armoured behemoth.  Unchain this monster at your earliest opportunity and let it run wild about you.  Just… warn your nearby village first before you do, okay? 

Words by : Chris Markwell

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