Winter of Sin
Violence Reigns Supreme

Despite being around since 1998 and having three fairly obscure releases under their belt, I’m pretty confident in stating that I doubt The Netherlands’ Winter of Sin was on many folks radars for the that time and those releases. Heck, I had never heard of them until now, and I’m sure a lot more folks will be hearing about them

And why will these guys be a little more noticeable? Well joining their ranks for this album  are 2 former members of God Dethroned, who suddenly split up in 2012 after 9 albums and very respectable career. Vocalist Henri Sattler and drummer  Michiel van der Plicht, (who joined God Dethroned in 2009) are now part of Winter of Sin, and boy does it show. Those lamenting the demise of God Dethroned, especially after releasing three killer albums before calling it quits. Notably the presence of Sattler on vocals,  and from what it sounds like some songwriting duties, as Violence Reigns Supreme sounds a lot like God Dethroned.

Now, I could be wrong as I have not heard any prior Winter of Sin material, but Sattler’s presence is immediately recognizable by his rasps and some of the riffs, the production and melodies on the album. It’s possible Winter of Sin sounded like this and were this good on their three prior albums ( a quick bandcamp hunt shows the band’s early material to be much more brittle, traditional, frosty and pure melodic black metal) , but I think fans (and Cyclone Empire) felt differently. The razor sharp, biting but melodic mix of black and death metal  reeks of God Dethroned‘s better material and even with Winter of Sin‘s (what I can assume) black metal emphasis, including a few synths here and there, the the more war metal ish tone of God Dethroned’s last couple of albums is undeniable.

And more power to Winter of Sin, by having Sattler and der Plicht join their ranks, they not only become elevated in the Netherlands and international metal scene, the result is a killer album that I imagine not many folks or labels would have been that interested in. Regardless if Sattler  had any hand in writing, just having him there helps. But as it stands, Violence Reigns Supreme is pretty kickass as the 10 tracks (not including instrumental “Virus”), all deliver blistering, tempestuous melodic blasts and war mongering marches.

One only need hear the opening and closing minute or so of opener “Astral Death Reign Algorithms” to hear the God Dethroned strains blending with a blazing Dissection-y style pacing and melody. The synths make an appearance to gloss up ‘”Maelstrom” with a melancholic mid section march that is pure God Dethroned. And that’s pretty much the formula for the album-blazing melodies, slicing solos and harsh (sickening ?) rasps as defined on “Black Ashes” or “Unleash Mayhem”.  There is nary a break to the seething but melodic pace beyond the aforementioned “Virus”, and parts of “Inheritors of Pain” (I fucking DARE you to tell me this song does not sound like a God Dethroned left over).

I know I’ve broken a record for name dropping God Dethroned already in this review, but it’s the White Worm in the room and enforced by Metal Blade and Cyclone Empire’s  relationship along with God Dethroned‘s past with Metal Blade. You think Winter of Sin would have released an album via Cyclone Empire/Metal Blade if Sattler wasn’t present? I think not. Regardless, Violence Reigns Supreme is a kick ass album and all the members deserve some credit,  even if it could easily pass for a God Dethroned album. And a good one at that.

 

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
May 26th, 2014

Comments

  1. Commented by: Juan Manuel Pinto

    God Dethroned meets Dissection? I’m sold!


  2. Commented by: Austin Weber

    I actually spoke with the band before publishing my own review, and was told by one of their two longtime guitarist that Sattler/the new drummer joined after all the music was long since written. Sattler did not write anything on the album. I was curious about that too, and now you know!


  3. Commented by: E. Thomas

    Thats great to know Austin- thanks. But anyone who hears this will be hard pressed to think it does not sound like statler wrote some stuff


  4. Commented by: Staylow

    Holy fucking hell – I’ve been waiting for members of God Dethroned to surface, especially Sattler. If you told me this was the new God Dethroned, I wouldn’t bat an eyelash. Sattler’s vocals are indeed immediately identifiable, and completely tied to the God Dethroned sound. Nice write up as always Erik!


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