02/03/2004

 
 

Scars Of The Crucifix

Mad At God

Conquered By Sodom

Fuck Your God

When Heaven Burns

Enchanted Nightmare

From Darkness Come

Go Now Your Lord Is Dead

The Pentecostal

 

Glen Benton - bass/ vocals

Eric Hoffman - guitars

Brian Hoffman - guitars

Steve Asheim - drums


DEICIDE : "Scars of the Crucifix"         deicide          Earache Records                      

  our interview with Glen Benton


review  by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo____   


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 its proceeding.

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 well.

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.

Rating: 9/10

 

dalia di giacomo    
 
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