Thursday, August 24, 2006

the devil has all the best songs

deicide - 'the stench of redemption'

released: august 21, 2006

1. the stench of redemption 2. death to jesus 3. desecration 4. crucified for the innocence 5. walk with the devil in dreams you behold 6. homage for satan 7. not of this earth 8. never to be seen again 9. the lord's sedition 10. black night

Another day, another ass-kicking return from an extreme metal leading name! With Slayer (see previous post), Mastodon and Deicide, August 2006 is shaping up as a metalhead's dream. As you might have guessed by that, much like Slayer's new album, 'The Stench Of Redemption' is the best thing the veteran Florida death metal outfit has done in many a year.

Turns out that kicking out the Hoffman brothers was the creative whipping the band needed. Jack Owen and Ralph Santolla picked up the guitars and, quite frankly, they proceed to shred all over the place on this record. There's no two ways about it - the Owen/Santolla pair deliver the finest riff-fest we've heard since last year's Exodus album, and plainly revitalize Glen Benton's crew in the process. Unlike Deicide's latest efforts which rather sounded death-metal-by-numbers, 'The Stench Of Redemption' sounds fresh, brutal and even dangerous. If you've been there, the blasphemous feeling of being a teenager and listening to 'Amon: Feasting The Beast' for the first time cannot be beat. But instead of a character in some half-arsed horror movie, Glen Benton sounds serious again. His vocals aren't even confined to the low growl anymore, some chilling high-pitched black metal screams have been added to his arsenal and they enrich the eerie feeling of the songs quite a lot.

Ah, the songs. No predictable chugga-chugga verse-chorus-verse easiness here anymore - Owen and Santolla squeal their way through crushing, exhilarating solos and brutal rhythms, injecting a newfound sense of melody that sharpens the whole sound and breathing life (death?) into compositions that acquire immense replaying value. The production is also much more adequate than the grain of before, the instruments are much clearer while maintaning a hefty dose of bite. To top it all off, as if it wasn't enough, they out-Slayer Slayer with 'The Lord's Sedition', a fiery slab of thrash that hits you when you thought you were safe and leaves you drooling for more, just before closing it off with an undescribable cover of Deep Purple's 'Black Night' that must be heard to be believed.

Fucking hell.

the good: incredible guitarwork, rejuvenated benton vocals - a demonic, venomous blast of brutality that reinstates deicide at the top of the death metal pile
the bad: you'll go to hell for listening to it! (which might actually be a good thing...)


  1. I really have not heard these guys since Legion. I liked the early stuff back then, but found Obituary and Morbid Angel to be more in depth and more interesting at the time. I have not kept up with any of those bands in the last say 12 years though. To me a lot of the death metal was just very slight variations on what Possessed and Death did in the 80's, but maybe I just don't get it.

  2. morbid angel and obituary were indeed more important, but deicide were always a very consistent band.

    and you're right, those two bands basically set the whole foundations. but there's been really innovative things since, like nile for example.

  3. Wow, I've been hearing great stuff about this CD. It's great to see an old band come back. Deicide were so notorious back in the day but the became a bit of joke there for while.

    I have to say that I'm greatly anticipating new output from Morbig Angel. I like the Tucker CDs a lot but it will be great to hear some new stuff with Vincent back in the band.

  4. fred - yeah, this is the first 'serious' deicide effort in years. i think morbid angel have been more or less in the same kind of decline, i hope vincent's return with light a fire under their collective behinds like deicide's line-up changes did.

  5. Your review does have me interested in this one. I think back to when I heard Human by Death or Heartwork by Carcass. it was great to hear these bands progress from noise to something more structured, but still keep heavy, pounding edge. I won't buy this new, but it shows up in the used bin for $8 or less than I may give it a chance.