|Review: God Dethroned - The World Ablaze|
|The World Ablaze|
Label: Metal Blade Records
Year released: 2017
Review online: May 20, 2017
Reviewed by: Bruno Medeiros
for:The World Ablaze
Rated 4.3/5 (86%) (10 Votes)
Don't you hate it when a band is so consistent, the members are so good as musicians and the albums are so great that we rarely have anything bad to talk trash about? No? Well, I do, because it's just no fun to the competition and the fans in general, and I feed on the awfulness and boredom of bad albums because they make me a better – and more hated, yay - reviewer. God Dethroned, that putrid and annoyingly awesome quintet from the Netherlands, disbanded after Under the Sign of the Cross, in 2012, and showed no promise of releasing a new album until late 2016. So I thought, "OK, now I'll get to trash them. No way a band can return to top form after completely ending its activities and losing some of the joy to play music, right?"
You see, I was very excited to review The World Ablaze, because I was finally going to get back at the nine other works before it for being so fucking great. The album begins with "A Call to Arms", a slow intro with a killer atmosphere and a simple, yet touching guitar solo introducing what was coming. And then "Annihilation Crusade" begins in a classic God Dethroned galloping riff. The visceral and ripping atmosphere, the brutal yet technical drumming, the bass lines eating my ears...it was all there, tearing my hopes of this being it, the one bad album of God Dethroned's career; It couldn't be...no, no!
I calmed myself down and listened to the whole album for the first time - wrists cut, salty tears falling down my cheek - waiting for a bump, a production or mixing mistake, a note out of key...nothing. It wasn't before the fourth time torturing my sadistic intent of bad-mouthing the Dutch Death/Black legends that I realized this was a lost battle. God Dethroned was back, and they were obliterating their enemies with fierceness and brutality in the form of music.
The World Ablaze pretty much takes what its predecessor did and executes it with competence. The more melodic-crafted lines and the exotic atmosphere are present on tunes like "On the Wrong Side of the Wire" and "The 11th Hour" while the brutality and pompousness can be seen on the more venomous tracks like "Close to Victory", "Messina Rage" and "Breathing Through Blood"; this last one being more cadenced and heavy, almost doom-like, with a marvelous scaling riff. Sattler's growls sound as good as ever and the tuning of the guitars reminisces the Ravenous era, providing a good amount of distortion and pedal work. The kitchen beautifully supports the rifferama, with van der Plicht stealing the show by pounding the skins and plates like there's no tomorrow.
Sorrowful and dense bits are present as well. "Königsberg" and "Escape Across the Ice (the White Army)" take care of those emotions by telling the sad and ominous story of the White Army, a confederation of Anti-Communist forces that fought the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War; cool stuff. The lyrics, by the way, are not mind-blowing, Shakespearian pieces of art, but do fill their purpose well. The mixing is another positive point here. The legendary Dan Swanö did a wonderful job with it and made the album even better with his unique view.
Like Swanö wisely said, "This album is a great combination of all kinds of tempos and styles the genre has to offer, each performed with crushing perfection, and catchy choruses and memorable melodic hooks! It will go down well among fans of Bolt Thrower". So there you have it. This is a stellar comeback of a band that should have never ended its activities. It made me angry as hell for not having weak spots because I was ready and willing to be one of the first human beings ever to put God Dethroned's awesomeness in check. Instead, what I found was a carefully-crafted piece of Death Metal gem that has to be heard by every fan of the genre this year. It's not as vicious as The Christhunt or as prolific as The Toxic Touch, but it definitely ranks on the top shelf of releases by the Dutch warriors. Sadly for me, I'll have to wait for the next killer band to release their Virtual XI or Eat the Heat so I can feed my sociopathic need to point out the catastrophic. Damn you, God Dethroned.
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