The End of Time Records
Release length: 45:02
Much like the previous Iugulatus album Satanic Pride, Open the Hearts carries a strong crisp production quality, this time focusing on a deeper, heavier presence. There is some moderate sharpness to the lead riffs, but not too strong, as if a weaker hum that lets the louder, sometimes twangy bass guitar stand out more. “Leviathan Prayer” shows off how well this sound works for the band through tight faster double bass kicks and mid-paced verses with slower riffs that have a groove you can’t help but bang your head to instinctively. There are times the distortion comes through louder, but when the music gets richer, the bass guitar itself shows dominance with blunt, effective bursts of ritualistic prayer done right.
“In the Blaze of Havoc” tears away at the listener with the thunderous bass kicks once more, and in spots furious blast beats laced with slower moments that offer the only sort of breathing room. The harsher vocals and bouts of growling shows a decent amount of range from the new blood, helping to keep the crushing tension alive. Much of this can also be said about “Without Divine Intervention,” which just hammers away at the listener’s skull with a thick assault courtesy the deeper tuning, allowing the sharpened distortion to only really show during some of the more complex chords.
“Devour the Sun” ends up breaking the mold a bit. While the final song does still show some aggression, the overall performance has more of a ritualistic vibe that shifts between slower and faster speeds. The slower sections usually find the bass sticking out distinctively, offering some simpler chords that feel a little more like toned down Atheist. Sometimes you’ll also find a twisted atmosphere, such as around the five minute mark where the environment becomes more eerie than anything. It’s a nice amount of variety that helps keep the near sixteen minute offering entertaining.
With the exception of “Devour the Sun,” Open the Hearts ends up an infectiously volatile display of Black Metal aggression. Between bouts of blistering blast beats and rich ritualistic rhythms, Archiect of Disease prove that even without Wojtass they have what it takes to beat you down and have you coming back for more. Don’t be misled by the new moniker. Architect of Disease picks up nicely where Iugulatus left off, and fans will definitely appreciation how the group handled the career altering change.
01. Leviathan Prayer – 4:34
02. Bones Regime – 6:01
03. In the Blaze of Havoc – 5:24
04. Without Divine Intervention – 4:19
05. Open the Hearts – 4:13
06. Rejection of the World – 4:46
07. Devour the Sun – 15:46
|Initial Pressing Score: 8/10