In the overwhelming throng of death metal bands out there these days it is often hard to find something that stands out but BEYOND THE SIXTH SEAL’s latest has managed to do just that, it’s a great piece of work I will happily admit but what makes it really stand tall against its rivals is its unique sound.
The sound is unique in the way that it combines riffs that wouldn’t be out of place in old school Heavy Metal with deep, growling, Death Metal vocals. This is an effect that if not done well could quite easily have been disastrous, luckily it worked and the resulting fusion is something quite pleasing to my ears.
The music is fast, precise and to be honest it puts me in a damn good mood which I can’t say is my normal response to Death Metal, sure I like Death Metal but never before has it actually made me feel this happy and I think it’s a great thing that it does. While the music obviously derives most of its inspiration from classic Heavy Metal there are also some obvious Melodic Death Metal roots in the background and the vocals, well, they’re just pure Death at its finest.
Tracks to keep an ear out for would be “I Die At 35” which although it may sound morbid is one of the tracks most influenced by the driving riffs of 80’s heavy Metal and “Reverly” which is actually remarkably IN FLAMES esque and is one of the slower pieces that actually works.
My only complaint with this is in the slower songs toward the end of the album, they just seem too serious and they lose the lightness and the flow that is so prevalent in the first half of the album.
All in all a solid release which only really lets you down towards the end, without a doubt something to keep an eye out for at your local record shop especially if you’re looking for something to cheer you up because, with its infectiously upbeat sound, it should have little trouble doing that.
(Online September 23, 2007)