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Gorefest - Rise to Ruin Review

by Matt Hensch

Whatever happened to faith in comeback albums? I mean the usual pessimism is somewhat understandable depending on the group and such, but with a band like Gorefest, you just can't doubt their impending success. Having already shown the world a hearty chunk of classic death metal after a long hiatus with La Muerte, Gorefest have actually improved from such a positive state to an advanced euphoria that shows clear traces of progression with 2007's Rise to Ruin. Death metal is something these guys have always mastered, and the utter domination on Rise to Ruin continues Gorefest's ever-lasting supremacy in both usual and uncommon ways.

It would be improper to call this a full-blown death metal CD, because it displays so much more than Gorefest's earliest physique. Though it does contain an excellent sum of grinding death metal, Rise to Ruin opens up its boarders and allows commanding doom influences, technical elements, and slight rock subdivisions to roam freely across the land of Gorefest without fear of discrimination. Such a free-willed ideology brings forth a new strain of death metal that actively combines old-school death metal with new experimentations; a flawless mixture in the end.

Still, this acquired approach is found in every waking moment of the album, and is completely void of all possible errors. Songs like the epic "Babylon's Whores" show storming blastbeats and rapid riffs at maximum velocity for just the right amount of time before a nifty dose of crushing doom passages filled with Jan-Chris De Koeijer's earth-shattering vocals penetrate the sound barrier. Of course, the overall record shows several new forms of musical experimentation previously unknown to Gorefest, but everything sounds great nonetheless.

To match this poetic display of barbarism is Jan-Chris De Koeijer's demonstration of growling that goes beyond the trend of just hitting low notes. Sure he uses the demonic vibe without any trouble, but our Dutch buddy focuses more on a twisted, bombastic tone rather the than the deep sound itself, and the result is nothing short of otherworldly. De Koeijer's voice is not only forceful, but dangerously original, which is certainly something the typical untalented belcher lacks compared to Gorefest's energetic singer.

The specialty of Rise to Ruin lies within the record's evolutionary concept and Gorefest's destructive perseverance as an old-school death metal squad. Everything found within this CD represents the hardy traditions of just kicking ass without the fear of proper exploration; it's truly a great listen. Though it may not receive the deserved press, Rise to Ruin strictly upgrades the fierce characteristics of Gorefest's pounding brutality with a neat poetic balance; truly a unique take of death metal here.

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Gorefest - Rise to Ruin


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