There are no original members left in the line up of this Dutch band, but with the guitar sound of Paul Baayens, the bass lines of Alwin Zuur and of course the voice of Martin van Drunen they kept the recognizable sound. Stefan Hüskens (Desaster, Matalucifer, Decayed) replaced drummer Bob Bagchus and completes todays line-up. With opener “Candiru” you immediately hear the sound Ashhyx is known for and why I like them. This is one of the faster songs, with the typical Asphyx sounding chainsaw riffs and the immense and intense growls and grunts of Martin van Drunen. I think that he will be in the top 5 of mighty grunting voices for a lot.
The second song is much slower and has quite some melodic guitarlines for a band like Asphyx. With “Wardroid” a lingering groovy song follows. “The Feeder” is more uptempo and is one of my favorite tracks. As always a lot of songs handle about war, but also sciencefiction is a subject (“Wardroid”) and “It Came From the Skies” has a meteoric stone fallen from the sky as subject. “The Grand Denial” is a more serious song about the Japanese capturing and prostituting Korean and Philippine woman in the war. The slow doomy music perfectly sticks to the subject. With the title track the tempo speeds up again and I’m sure this will be a track the audience will ask for. Mid tempo “Forerunners of the Apocalypse” is one of my other favorite ones, due to the mighty crunchy dirty riff that carries the track.
Just when I thought there would be no more surprises the subtle piano part near the end of “Subterra Incognita” proves me wrong. After another heavy mid tempo song with a fast middle part, “Death:The Only Immortal” ends rather slow. Funeral doom fans certainly have to check this one out. In general the album has more variety in tempo than predecessor ‘Deathhammer’ and due to the clear but heavy production it all sounds great. This ninth album is typical Asphyx, but that is how the fans like it.
note: The album’s limited edition version will be released as a 2-Disc Mediabook including two bonus cover versions “Servants Of the Warsmen” (Winter) and “Master” (Master).
02. Division Brandenburg
04. The Feeder
05. It Came From the Skies
06. The Grand Denial
07. Incoming Death
08. Forerunners of the Apocalypse
09. Subterra Incognita
10. Wildland Fire
11. Death: The Only Immortal
Playing time: 47:50
Release date: 30 September 2016
Label: Century Media