Weapons of Spiritual Carnage

Sweden’s Ironmaster is a supergroup featuring a trio of dudes who are ir have been in such bands as Carnal Forge, Facebreaker, Scar Symmetry Dark Funeral and Incapacity. And while Black Lion Records is usually known for their more melodic or symphonic black metal offerings, Ironmaster delivers a savage assault of blistering no frills blackened/death metal, as you’d expect from the veteran lineup and their other bands.

I could reference the Tribe of Pazuzu album from earlier this year or the recent Deathreich album both featuring numerous high-profile folks, as Ironmaster deliver the same sort of excellently produced, direct punches to the face with their 11 songs. I mean first track “Solemn Pestilence” rips your face off right out of the gate and the second aptly named track “Ocean of Searing Hatred” goes straight for the fucking throat with even more rage, and even throws in a cool little short-lived melody in a repeating refrain. And those two opening salvos sort of lays the groundwork for the rest of the album with little deviation.

A few little atmospheric bridges and sneaky melodies arise here and there (i.e. “Weapons of Spiritual Carnage”, “Infinite Virulent”, “Cast into the Hollow” and a rather needles interlude in “Implications of Sacral Time”) amid the controlled chaos, but for the most part this is pretty relentless, blistering stuff- like if Cryptopsy , Vomitory and God Dethroned had a love child (injected with the DNA of all the members’ other bands of course) – just listen to “Monolithic Suppressor Engaged” ( which even has a brief symphonic black metal tinge). And ultimately that’s where the album’s slight weakness lies. As you get into the album’s back end with tracks like the pure blackened bluster of “Lies of Apathy”, “Bringer of Deception” or “Dismantling Eternity”, things get a bit familiar.

But overall, this is a high-quality, face-ripping back/death metal album from some seasoned vets, and it shows with an output of really good stuff that deserves your attention.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
June 29th, 2023


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