Since 1998, Blood Red Throne has been slowly gaining momentum in the death metal world with each and every release. The uprising Norway-based group has already had their fair share of goodness with records like Altered Genesis, but could they ever hit an obstacle? Well, those hoping to avoid a little abhorrence under the Blood Red Throne moniker will be slightly disappointed with the band's fourth album, entitled Come Death, as it is a clear sign of decline.
Looking for mathematical death metal that twists your f***ing cerebrum like the old Blood Red Throne releases? Sorry, but it isn't here. Blood Red Throne came back from Altered Genesis and just doesn't act like the same band; in fact, calling this on par with any of their past releases is indeed a parody. Come Death can only be described as the result of Blood Red Throne turning everything they've become down a few notches, just to get that dopey feeling that lurks within this flawed letdown.
It would be absolutely irrelevant to single out a particular instrument for its lack of technical attributes and forceful energy because everything from the drums to Tchort's riffing effort is strongly impacted by such colorless factors. The percussion, for instance, is bland at best. It is just simple and repetitive patterns with the semi-frequent usage of blastbeats, but with hardly any fills, spastic sections, or memorable motions. Green Carnation's mastermind severely downplays his expected performance with multiple mid-paced flops and the typical death metal jazz found on the *insert any namable death metal record here* CD. In case you're wondering, Tchort occasionally shows off a classy groove vibe and the ever-so-rare labyrinthine arrangement of chaotic shredding that once dominated his guitar playing, which is good, but not common.
However, the record's true highlight is one Blood Red Throne fans have known to expect with each and every offering: Erlend Caspersen's inhuman bass playing. No matter the speed or atmosphere, Caspersen endlessly vomits crazy bass lines and forces the band to evolve from the expected musical state into a new breed of technical playing. Typically, Tchort's riffing should be driving the show, but our crazy bass player is adding greatness with the otherworldly addition of finger-slapping madness. Mediocre death metal doesn't stop Caspersen from flying across his fret while tapping every damn string in the process. There's something wrong with the world if this guy isn't acknowledged as the best bassist in death metal; he puts everyone else to shame.
On the topic of making the talents of others seem minimal, Mr. Hustler's grand voice is out of the picture, and his recent departure brings in the sub-par substitute known as Vald. Gone is the vicious attitude of former Blood Red Throne growlers, and in comes the dull display of unoriginal one-toned growls and pseudo-screams that can be found anywhere else. Vald's barks are just boring to put it bluntly, and he certainly lacks the torturing tone most growlers have; basically, it's really generic for a vocalist in this genre. Not sure about other Blood Red Throne fans, but I'm missing Mr. Hustler quite dearly after experiencing his replacement's attempt to fill his shoes.
Although it has its moments, Come Death doesn't feel like the same Blood Red Throne that once ejaculated insane riffs, intense growls, and rapid percussion all so nicely. Taking a few steps back is never a good thing, but there is still some decency present in Tchort's riffs and the bass playing, which aids the overall situation and brings back a few hints of Blood Red Throne's greatness. I guess you might want to look into this one if Altered Genesis makes you horny, yet that'll probably be the prime audience attracted to Come Death due to its neutral state of mediocrity.