Days of Betrayal
Decapitated For Research

Where as most deathcore in 2008 was content to prolapse your bowels with breakdowns and little else, the full length debut from Belgium’s Days of Betrayal is actually one of the more complete deathcore albums I’ve heard, with an actual focus on songs and riffs and opposed to endless open note beat downs.

Released in the tail end of 2008, Decapitated For Research seemed to have been an overlooked deathcore entry amid the likes of Whitechapel, Carnifex, and admittedly it languished on my Ipod for the better part of 4 months but when the title track randomly came up on my Ipod during a workout, it piqued my interest to further explore an album I had previously miscast as by the numbers deathcore.

And certainly Days of Betrayal do the by the numbers parts of deathcore very well; robust breakdowns, dual screeched /bellowed vocals, a slightly forced sheen of death metal etc. But where most deathcore are content to litter the breakdowns with a smattering of piecemeal At The Gates hack ‘n’ slash galloping to break things up, Days of Betrayal are actually better at their between breakdown riffage than their breakdowns-which for the record are solid but hardly say Rose Funeral or The Great Commission quality. Rather than simply thrown in some vaguely melodic Gothenburg riffage or completely chaotic spazz fest, Days of Betrayal actually construct some solid high octane, melodeath on steroid moments between bludgeonings.

Granted, the whole affair isn’t terribly groundbreaking or quite ready for elite status in the genre, as it’s is still well done deathcore but it makes for a slight change from the breakdowns being the centerpiece of the album and certainly demands some attention from fans of the genre. Tracks like “Murder Ballads”, “Hanging By a Thread”, “Execute Hope”, and “The Next Victim” just have a more developed sense of varied song craft than many of their US peers with some well placed melodies and solos as opposed to a simple gallop, blast, breakdown, solo breakdown mantra, thought there is some of it present.

“Within Melancholic Rapture” does follow a by the number standard with a orchestral segue, but it does not detract from a surprisingly good and as I mentioned earlier, complete deathcore album that manages to sit astride the genres requisite elements as well as push the song writing department into slightly more respectable territory.

A very promising debut and another decent additon to Shiver’s solid roster.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
February 10th, 2009

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