The Acacia Strain
The Dead Walk

“The Heaviest Album of the Year. Period” – from Prosthetic’s promotional sheet.

Folks, there is not denying that the ‘heavy’ in heavy metal takes many form; the blazing speed of Nile, the rumble of Bolt Thrower and the dirge like oppression of Catacombs; all heavy in their own right, but regardless of what you term as ‘heavy’, there is no denying that The Acacia Strain’s The Dead Walk is in fact one heavy, heavy mother fucker.

Of course, any album can be produced to sound heavy, but on The Dead Walk Adam D’s (Killswitch Engage) production job has to be recognized as one of the most bottom heavy, bass filled swathes of destruction ever put down to CD. One could argue that without said production, The Dead Walk would be just another breakdown heavy hardcore album, but to their credit, The Acacia Strain meld their production around their many, many moments of jaw dropping heft.

Granted, this is at its basest level, a simple, chugging hardcore album with a few angular tangents thrown in, but everything about this album is done to the extreme; the vocals of Vincent Bennet are borderline death growls with not a clean respite in site, the now dual guitars of Daniel Daponde and Daniel Laskeiwitz are simply constructed yet brutally efficient and the rhythm section of drummer Kevin Boudot and bassist Seth Coleman is utterly devastating.

The songs themselves continue where 3750 left off as they are literally simple vessels for The Acacia Strain to pummel you with some merciless beatdowns, any metalcore melody retained from the bands debut, are basic at best and the short bursts of brute core rarely last more than three minutes and really don’t stand out as true, developed songs.
But boy do they ever bring the heavy.

Quite literally from opening intro “Sarin; The End” through ridiculously heavy bruisers like “Burn Face”, “4X4”, “Demolisher”, “Pity”, “Predator, Never Prey” and the immense title track, The Acacia Strain beat, pummel and stomp on your spinal chord for a little over 30 minutes. Granted, your not going to be humming any of the rather simplified songs, but at loud volumes on a beefy stereo (I’d really like to hear this on some tricked out rapper’s car stereo…), you make be eating through a straw for a while as well as get evicted.

Depending on your definition of heavy, the promotional line above may actually correct. I happen to agree.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 22nd, 2006

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