Metal Review – Dekapitator: We Will Destroy… You Will Obey!!! (2011 Reissue)

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Metal Review – Dekapitator: We Will Destroy… You Will Obey!!! (2011 Reissue)
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Degradead: We Will Destroy... You Will Obey!!!
Death Metal, Thrash Metal
Blackmetal.com Records, Relapse Records (2011)
1999 / June 21st, 2011
Release length: 33:42 / 48:26 (2011)
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For fans of the whole Goregrind scene at the time, there was a band that might have peaked some curiosities had they paid close enough attention, but it wasn’t quite in the same vein of music. Dekapitator is a Death/Thrash Metal act that formed back in 1996 in San Jose, California. But, one of the main reasons some people may really know this band is due to all but one member having been involved with Exhumed. Of course some members have worked with other bands too such as Andy Maniac Col who is attached Cretin and Repulsion, as well as Matt Harvey involved with Gravehill, but all of these acts did come later on after Dekapitator was established. We Will Destroy… You Will Obey!!! was issued back in 1999 through Blackmetal.com Records, so obviously this was a more underground release for it’s time. But, even if you knew of this release at that time, was it really anything that special?

We Will Destroy… You Will Obey is an album that essentially took the old-school early Thrash sound and wrapped some Death Metal around it, such as guttural vocals and a little more impact in the music with Death Metal hooks and grooves lingering here and there, as well as a matching general intensity to it. The production quality is actually rather good for it’s time, especially for an underground effort. The music itself is pretty strong and clear, though comes off a little hollow. The vocals are also about what you would expect, having more of a Hardcore edge to them along the lines of something you might hear from a more traditional Hardcore band from New York, but with a more gutteral approach. By today’s standards, it’d be comparable to something along the lines of Gravehill with Gamma Bomb vocals and Death Metal instead of a Black Metal influence. The thing that works so well is that the band really does focus in more on the Thrash, so these vocals ultimately work, especially with the more angstry yet aggressive sound and attitude of the material that seems to benefit a bit from that hollow sound, giving it a bit of a rawer edge that adds to the attitude the release has.

Aside the general atmosphere, this winds up being an album you have to build up an appreciation for somewhat. The music here is great, there’s no denying that. “Release the Dogs” and “Hell’s Metal” really stand out for their old-school Thrash approach with some more guttural vocals attached. The higher falsetto wails on “Hell’s Metal” really capture the atmosphere of the recording well, and just cast the listener back into the glory days when the style was still fresh and new. The vocals will take a bit to get accustomed too, especially given the somewhat rocky start on “One Shot, One Kill”, and the rather bland gang chants that backed it up at times. These chants do appear elsewhere on the recording, and they sound about the same, but given the quality of the music, they can either suit the tone, or just not really work out too well. Of course the tracks that have a heavier Death Metal influence also stand out nicely and take things away from that older Thrash sound. “Possessed with Damnation” makes for one of the more enjoyable tracks to really utilize the addition of Death Metal well, leaving the track a stronger, more intimidation creation then other tracks like “Hell’s Metal” and “One Shot, One Kill”. Of course this means that angsty attitude mentioned early doesn’t really exist on the track either.

One of the songs that really stands out with this recording, and even shows the promise that Dekapitator has, is the song “Thundering Legions”. The track has a pretty strong Thrash presence to it, but it’s handled in a manner that really takes the track into a more epic sensation. You get the feeling that the band intended to genuinely try to purpotray the concept of legions of enemies charging towards you for battle, and in many ways the band succeeds at this, more in a sense that would be fitting to a Bathory track as far as the epic sensations would go. This track is really the only song to do this, which is kind of sad considering how well the band pulls it off. Sure “Hell’s Metal” and “T.F.S. (Total Fucking Slaughter)” make up some of the better tracks on here, and the latter having a stronger death Metal presence, with catchier tracks like “We Will Destroy… You Will Obey” and “Attack With Mayhem” posing more of an attitude driven sound to the release. This becomes one of the few problems to the effort: The atmosphere is greatly varied, leaving you not sure if you want to go off and start a mosh, or just punch somebody in the face.



The 2011 Relapse Records reissue of We Will Destroy… You Will Obey is essentially the same album made available in a better circulation. If you have the album, you may not really want to trade up from the original pressing, but this version does include some bonus material, which sounds more like four demo recordings of pre-existing songs tacked onto the end. This is perhaps one of the best things that could have been done for a reissue of this album, as it basically confirms that the rawer edge to the production quality of the main album really helps the material out. All four songs are essentially the same as the originals, though “Hell’s Metal (Alternate Version)” does differ in sound quality compared to the other three songs.

But, they just get progressively more raw, and it just sound better, like a lost independent recording from the early days of Thrash. The aggression and intimidating sound is amped up on these tracks, and that general angsty sound in some of the other tracks before these bonus songs is essentially non-existent. On top of that, the overall sound is deeper, and that really helps the effort out. The music just feels richer from the deeper bass-driven sound, and overall has a more intimidating sound that some of the earlier tracks had but couldn’t quite reach to the same degree as these. “Haunted by Evil” and “Hell’s Metal (Alternate Version)” make for fantastic cuts that really just hammer away at the listener, and “Make Them Die” is almost like a whole other beat even though it’s no different from the version that appears on the initial pressing. The bonus version of “Faceripper”, however, doesn’t fare too well, and chances are good after once through with this version that sounds like a transfer from a really beat up cassette tape, you’ll probably not really go to it again, especially with all the moments the audio just drops out and all the white noise and muffled music that comes with it that really holds the song back.


Overall, We Will Destroy… You Will Obey!!! is a gem that was hidden away in the deepest regions of the internet when it was just becoming more commonplace. The material here varies greatly between the Death Metal and Thrash Metal styles from their earlier conception, and for it’s time this wasn’t anything too unique still, but it definitely was an album that proved the underground to be rich in material such as this. If you happened to miss out on this release, or if you just want those bonus tracks, the reissue is perhaps your best bet, as all but the bonus version of “Faceripper” sound better then the tracks on the initial pressing, and really make this version well worth your money. But, whatever version of this release you happen on, you definitely should take the time out to experience it. Despite vocals that could have been better and having to get a little adjusted to the lead vocals, and the music having varying atmospheres and attitudes that often seem to clash with the general ideas the band was trying to put out there, We Will Destroy… You Will Obey!!! makes for a pretty strong album, and is definitely worth checking out when you get a chance.

Initial Release:
01. One Shot, One Kill – 2:51
02. Release the Dogs – 3:55
03. We Will Destroy… You Will Obey – 3:09
04. Hell’s Metal – 3:20
05. Make Them Die – 1:27
06. Possessed with Damnation – 3:40
07. Thundering Legions – 3:59
08. Faceripper – 3:14
09. Attack with Mayhem – 2:28
10. T.F.S. (Total Fucking Slaughter) – 2:03
11. Haunted by Evil – 4:39

2011 Reissue:
12. Hell’s Metal (Alterate Version) (Bonus Track) – 3:54
13. Make Them Die (Bonus Track) – 1:29
14. Haunted by Evil (Bonus Track) – 4:48
15. Faceripper (Bonus Track) – 3:30

Initial Pressing Score: 8/10

2011 Reissue Score: 8.5/10
Dekapitator (band)
Dekapitator
Digital review copy of this release provided by Relapse Records.