Crown of the Apocalypse

Virginia’s blackened death metal band, Warthrone, return with their second album, and this follow-up to their debut: Venomassacre, showcases the band pummel the listener again and again and again.  The band further stream lining their line-up with now Erik and his wife Kristel as the members.  Erik plays drums, guitars and now is back to singing, as he did with Witch-Hunt many years ago.  Kristel continues with keyboards and bass guitar.

9 songs in 38 minutes, the gruesome twosome gets things underway with “The Eyes of Kings” and Warthrone have made it evident that they are almost fully entrenched in the black metal sound.  Some parts death metal, in certain areas of the album, but check out the opening guitar riff-pure black metal with a haunting melody to it.  The song has some excellent keys from Kristel and Erik’s black metal shrieks are brutal because they’re very angry sounding.  I like my black metal vocals this way, rather than sounding like a screeching duck being mauled to death.  The double bass is triggered, however quite vicious and I’ve seen Erik play drums, live when he was with Dying Fetus so I know what a monster he is with the drums.  The opening is pure brutality.  The title track is even more face ripping with a nice slower passage at the 50 second break with a Holy Shit moment with the isolated monster guitar riff, bass slide and then right into a blast that Satan only wishes he knew how to do and a nice little hiccup style growl from Erik.  The blast is ferocious.  Nice dual black and then death metal styled vocals.  I like the drum roll that then features a guitar solo and back into the mid-paced part and keys.  The 2.30 beat is great right before the vicious blast.

“Upon the Golden Altar” has a nice mid 90’s drum beat to open the song with a great black metal melodic riff with angry blackened screams.  The double bass kicks in and the new guitar riff which comes in is very catchy as some well-placed death metal vocals come in right before going back into the black metal vocals.  The 1.30 drum pattern and keyboard elements add an epic atmosphere to the longest track on the album.  Warthrone does these elements quite well and I like more of the expansive nature they have incorporated on Crown of the Apocalypse.  They never forget the melody in the midst of the chaos and violent blasting.  That stop n go style double bass and keyboard part returns and some great bass guitar work at the 3.05 part right before the monster blasting returns.  Then a wild guitar solo comes in and “Upon the Golden Altar” kills from beginning to end.

Other areas of Crown of the Apocalypse are also wonderful.  “Apollyn” actually has some classic metal moments in the beginning which I love.  The album, as a whole, is catchy, brutal, well-played and as I stated earlier I like the epic atmospheric moments Warthrone put forth on this album.  I would like to see maybe the band do a 7-10 minute song on the next album, incorporating more of those elements, I think it would work quite well.   “Unto the Face of Serpents” hints on what’s to come and the female vocals on this track are second to non.  This album is a buy or die-pure brutal bliss.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
September 17th, 2019


  1. Commented by: E. Thomas

    Really digging this. There are some fantastic, Epoch of Unlight melodies here.

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