Power of Metal.dk Review

Black Crown Initiate
The Wreckage of Stars
Style: Technical Death Metal
Release date: 27 October, 2014
Playing time: 52:46

This album had so much good press that I was really looking forward to it. But sometimes that's all it is: hype. Black Crown Initiate are loud. Are they progressive death metal like they are billed? No. They are just loud. Heavy? If loud is equal to heavy, then yes. The problem is simple. The production and mix on "The Wreckage of Stars" gives into the loudness wars and puts the drums so prominent in the mix that you can't really hear anything else especially when there's a blast beat. And BCI loves blast beats, which is fine if they are mixed properly. The band have a bass player I believe. Listening to this album, you wouldn't know it since you can't hear any bass on the album at all. The second loudest part is the harsh vocals which are average at best.

There are some interesting quieter guitar parts but if there are any drums, the parts get drowned out. The other problem is that the songs aren't terribly interesting when you can hear something. For example, the opening track "Great Mistake" (which would have been a better title for the album) has some subtlety but the band has no idea what to do when they do something other than pummel you. This is a young band that's in the hands of some terrible producers. Their EP has the same awful sound. If you just want something loud, then you might enjoy this album. I've read plenty of reviews that just marvel at how brutal and pummeling it is. That's volume, folks.

If you want well produced, well executed and amazing progressive death metal, listen to the latest Job For A Cowboy album "Sun Eater" or the new Beyond Creation album, "Earthborn Evolution". Both are prime examples of how an album SHOULD sound. And if you think the problem is that BCI is a young band, check out the debut EP "Predestined" from Contrarian who are VERY technical and more brutal than BCI. I had high hopes for this album so it is easily my biggest disappointment of 2014. Listen to a FULL album stream before investing in this album.

01. Great Mistake
The Fractured One
The Human Lie Manifest
Withering Waves
To The Eye That Leads You
The Wreckage of Stars
Shapes Collapse
Label: eOne Heavy
Distribution: Hold Tight PR
Reviewed by: Rob Pociluk
Date: 16 November, 2014
Website: blackcrowninitiate.bandcamp.com