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Review: Asphyx - Deathhammer

Label: Century Media Records
Year released: 2012
Duration: 47:29
Tracks: 10
Genre: Death Metal

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: April 28, 2012
Reviewed by: Christopher Foley
Readers Rating

Rated 4.28/5 (85.52%) (29 Votes)

How could this have not been awesome? Asphyx are one of the coolest death metal bands around, and here we have their eighth full-length release: Deathhammer. Here we see van Drunen and the lads proudly flying the flag for true death metal, waving the middle finger proudly to the modern bands, whilst steamrolling anything else in its way.

The album opens up rather abruptly, no need for introduction, just crushing raw death metal. Martin van Drunen proudly spews forth a virulent storm of lyrical violence, whilst the band burns your face with an acidic guitar tone, muscular bass lines and earthy, raucous-sounding drums. The albums title track is a particularly awesome number, with van Drunen proudly bellowing "This is true death metal you bastards" before the warzone opens up. I'm not one to quote lyrics in a review, but he really does lay the smack-down on lesser bands in this track here:

Vocals so poor, like frogs in a moor
Guitars like clouds of fruit flies
Where's the bass sound, drums hat don't pound
Hear how our iron church cries
They don't give a fuck, just collecting bucks
Acting like statues on stage
Our final call to all those false
We summon thou bastards to rage

In the hands of an inexperienced band and a lesser vocalist this style of lyrics would come off as fairly cheap aggression, but this is fucking Asphyx and they can tell it however they wish. This album certainly serves as the remedy to a lot of the poor modern death metal acts I hear (especially the sterile technical crap). Deathhammer boasts a great balance between the bands leviathan, crushing death/doom numbers and of course your face-smashing death metal crunchers. The track-listing has been well conceived too with a great balance between the band's style. Standouts would include the aforementioned title track, the unsubtle "We Doom You to Death" and the gargantuan "As The Magma Mammoth Kisses".

Overall Deathhammer is a great death metal album, giving on a archaic doomy stench. Fans of the last Autopsy will no doubt eat this up, but for my money I'd give the edge to this. This is certainly one of the finest albums I've heard in the genre this year, and along with Horrendous' latest opus is essential for fans of the style. Whilst I do enjoy some of the more modern bands, you just can't beat the old school sound and you can tell Asphyx well and truly love and worship their genre.

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Review: Necroceros (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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Review: The Rack (reviewed by Nemanja Mandic)
Interview with Drummer Bob Bagchus on June 3, 2012 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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