review by dalia "gryphon_spirit"
Very interesting. Scars of the Crucifix
is not only one of the most meaningful albums made by this legendary
band from Florida, but it is a very technical product that, when
examined with attention, can let surface remarkable details. Scars of
Crucifix is anchored enough into the band's roots but, at the same
time, expresses all the new enthusiasm that Benton, Asheim, and the
Hoffman brothers seem to evoke, in part due to a tonic change of label.
Other important peculiarity is that Deicide develop in this album a
dry, very effective technical Death that has much of brutality
and even more lot of heaviness, but they combine it with a certain
subtle quantity of solemnity in disguise. Scars of the Crucifix
is like an impressive impending picture that hangs over you,
threatening. Very aggressive, drilling and cutting lead solos
are one of the dynamic factors in this music. But the rhythmic session
too is incredibly powerful and relentless, providing tempo changes,
scale-excursions and winning loops, brutal fast pulses and pushes crash
into you. Headbanging temptation blow in gust. To which stand is
useless. The extraordinary fact is that many tracks develop a great
three-dimensional sensation but starting from an initial impression of
bidimensionality. It is a bit like to observe a photo or a movie in 3d
with the proper glasses : your eyes need a moment in order to realize
the 3d dimension. The very deep barking and mighty vocals of
Glen Benton integrate perfectly with the rhythmic and are the natural
counterbalance to the lead solos that shoot in the air violent high
tunes. According to the psychoacoustics this combination deep-high
should both charge and discharge the nervous system. Drums span from
aggressive snare-hits to refined double kicks and in general some slight convergences
with Malevolent Creation can be found.
But the most intriguing thing is that, imo, this album is articulated in
3 parts : the first part is virtually represented by the first 2 songs,
the openers, Scars of the Crucifix and Mad at God.
The second segment goes from track 3 (Conquered by Sodom) till
track 7 (From Darkness Come) . While the last part is
identifiable indeed with the last 2 songs that present somehow a
different rhythmic, delivering a couple of passages of their own
that enrich the base scheme, and so much that you get the
impression that these 2 songs are really something different from
those of the central part of the work.
The opener title track Scars of the Crucifix is a Radio Club
piece with much charisma and catchiness. It is brutal and heavy,
hammering, a bit blasphemous and persistent, but however
immediately agreeable. The heaviness of the rhythm is developed through quickly
resounding layers put one on the top of the other. A high vocal trace
adds evilness and that touch of blasphemy : this is another
characteristic of the album, underlined, for example, also in
the tracks 2 and 4. In the title track, the lead solo is
agreeably domesticated. Mad at God follows the same
inspiration, therefore it is quickly assimilable but more solemn
and deeper, with serious loops, and even with an anthemic face in
Through Conquered by Sodom we enter in the main sphere of the
album with the characteristics discussed before. Conquered by
Sodom has in particular a great dynamism concerning strings and
backing soundscape and tempo changing through a lively mid tempo till
speed attacks. When Heaven burns is the incarnation of the best
features of this album : it is varied with multiple iterations and
hyperheavy riffings, with a breathtaking Death drum attacks and
omnicomprehensive lead solo.
And finally the 2 excellent tracks Go now your Lord is dead and The
Pentecostal, in which maybe the band should have dared even more.
Small but essential changes in the musical content of some passages make
these tracks different, and make us suppose that Deicide will explore
new horizons in their loopings. The Pentecostal, due to distorted
psycho high tonalities, assaults not only your body but your brain as
The cover art by tattoo king Paul Booth rides, strange coincidence, the
wave of the movie The Passion of Christ. The only negative shadow ?
Maybe this album is too technical and, apparently, some central tracks
appear, at a superficial listening, too similar and they aren't.
Therefore this is an album for Death and Metal connoisseurs only !!! For
all others : Achtung und verboten ! But well, only
few chosen ones can "enjoy" the scars of the cross.