Deicide: In the Minds of Evil

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Deicide: In the Minds of Evil
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Deicide: In the Minds of Evil
Death Metal
Century Media Records
November 25th, 2013
Release length: 36:55
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Back in 2004, Deicide unleashed their seventh full-length effort Scars of the Crucifix, and reclaimed their rightful place as kings in the Death Metal world. Over the years that followed, they fine-tuned their sound, and even experimented with ideas, much like with their 2008 effort Till Death Do Us Part, which was met with mixed criticism. It’s now 2013, and they prepare to let loose their eleventh studio album, In the Minds of Evil. With “Thou Begone” and the title track available for streaming, many fans are already chomping at the bit for more. But does this album live up to the standard recently set, or is this more a step backwards for the group?

“In the Minds of Evil” kicks off the album, and it’s a surprising choice. This entry throws it back to the days of Serpents of the Light, carrying a rather basic chug that does expand into some additional chaos as it progresses. The guitar solo is simply fantastic, and ushers in some of the catchiest material the performance has to offer. “Even the Gods Can Bleed” also carries this in some spots. While a far more aggressive offering, the song can remind listeners of “Blame it on God” during the main verses. Then there’s “Thou Begone,” which carries a typical, yet authority fuelled chug that the bass kicks definitely save. After a little more time, the track kicks up the speed, but the riffs used are even more basic than the earlier chugging, just faster.

“Godkill” kicks right in with a great deal of energy and infectiously violent riffs that finally introduce some consistent technicality. The guttural vocals retain the same level of enthusiasm they had since the start of the album, but some passages find them getting a little deeper. Some background rasps would have been nice, especially during the blast beat fuelled passed prior to the guitar solo. Sadly these are largely absent, only appearing a few times, mostly towards the end “Between the Flesh and the Void” to compliment the stunning and extensive Neo-Classical guitar solo. “Kill the Light of Christ” brings that Classical touch to the main verses as well, giving it a truly grim atmosphere here, as well as with some of the leads that hit prior to the solo that will have you banging your head along.

“Misery of One” is also worth mentioning. It carries a truly oppressive atmosphere during the mid-tempo passages, which are handled a lot better than the first two tracks. These are a little open, but the additional cymbals help to fill the gaps some of those macabre sounding riffs can leave behind. The faster areas hammer the drums into the listener as well, practically dwarfing the guitars, but not in volume. The faster pace isn’t quite at the point of blasting, but has the same intensity one might find on a Suffocation recording as well.

All that said, you can spot some patterns showing through in many tracks. Most songs start with a restricted beginning that gives way to a violent outburst for a verse or two. By the second, which is more common, there is a bridge with some stand out leads that give way to an impressive guitar solo with faster music behind it that is downright infectious. Next is the main verse or chorus once more. This is the general layout that stands out the most, but thankfully isn’t every track. The over-the-top “End the Wrath of God” is a prime example. It uses two guitar solos with some classical leads in the vein of Vital Remains that amp up the adrenaline each time they hit, caving to a very brief conclusion, allowing it to immediately stick out a lot more.

With some repeating structures that are pretty obvious to pick up on, but don’t do any more damage than some of the typical mid-career Deicide performances that litter the album, In the Minds of Evil ends up a largely standard grab bag of Death Metal. It definitely isn’t bad, but, other than “Godkill,” “Kill the Light of Christ” and “End the Wrath of God,” there aren’t many tracks here that end up memorable, even after a good number of spins. Most of the time In the Minds of Evil comes off as if the band is taking a few steps back. This wouldn’t be bad if they weren’t channeling the material of their two least liked recordings. But, in their defence, Deicide does beef that era up with a rich audio quality, which is exceptional throughout the whole album, and excellent drumming that helps save many of the typical performances. This is easily a recording worth hearing more from first, or at least asking yourself if you’re ready to go back to the days of In Torment in Hell or not.

01. In the Minds of Evil – 3:53
02. Thou Begone – 3:44
03. Godkill – 3:12
04. Beyond Salvation – 2:58
05. Misery of One – 3:22
06. Between the Flesh and the Void – 3:55
07. Even the Gods Can Bleed – 2:58
08. Tample the Cross – 3:00
09. Fallen to Silence – 3:10
10. Kill the Light of Christ – 3:30
11. End the Wrath of God – 3:14
Initial Pressing Score: 6.5/10

Deicide
Deicide

Digital review copy of this release provided by Century Media Records.