Blood Red Throne
Come Death

When it comes to straight-up death metal, few bands can amuse me. Even when a death metal record strikes me, it surely isn’t because it’s setting the world on fire, but mainly because there’s a little flavor that holds my interest. Poland’s Hate did that for me last year. Norway’s Blood Red Throne hasn’t rattled me as anything worthwhile over the past few years, but 2007’s Come Death is a very lively and satisfying venture in good old quality death metal.

Shockingly, this record is a big change from what I have heard with their previous efforts. First and most noticeable development is the introduction of new throat man Vald. This guy is a welcome addition to the band as his vocal range is way more diverse than anything Blood Red Throne has offered before. Vald is very reminiscent of death god Glen Benton at times and produces a more pissed off rasp than guttural. Vald is a very talented man and can amaze at how many words he can relentlessly spew out. Also, astraddle upon this bloody throne is a new drummer by the name of Anders. Once again, not a bad choice for this band as Mr. Anders is an agile drummer with enough licks and changes to only add to the action within this CD.

Musically, Blood Red Throne has impressively altered their sound as well. Come Death showcases a more melodic, technical, and American sound, which is a departure from their more pummeling sound of previous records. Still holding to some brutal moments, this band layers groove after groove and tremendous melodic breaks that verge on melodic death and thrash. Modernized would be a good way to put it. From the opener “Slaying the Lambs” Come Death will continuously pound technical riffing and exciting changes that make for an excellent death metal album that honestly is one of the better releases of the entire year, not to mention the production is metallic and slick as hell. The fast picking and standard mold of death is there but there are moments of rhythm that will make you move your head for sure.

Impressive shakes are heard with the bass playing. Probably some of the best fingering I have heard in a longtime on a record of this genre. Erlend’s melodic jazzy fills are very auditable and crisp. He never plays straight chords. There’s so much spice in his bass playing that it surely makes the standout moments of the record. That’s quite an accomplishment for a death metal bass player, especially on a CD with so many moments already. The riffs you can expect are similar to those on a Cynic album.

All in all this is a very enjoyable slab of quality death metal with about every aspect you could imagine. The introduction of melody and technicality is something I for one cannot ignore. Though Come Death isn’t reinventing anything, it is one strong motherfucker and holds close to top of the year for me. Give it a spin and judge for yourself.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shane Wolfensberger
November 15th, 2007

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