Exhumed: Necrocracy

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Exhumed: Necrocracy
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Exhumed: Necrocracy
Death Metal, Grindcore
Relapse Records
August 6th, 2013
Release length: 38:29
AudioStreet
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Necrocracy marks the second full-length album since Exhumed reformed in 2010. Their previous effort, All Guts, No Glory received plenty of positive attention all around, and with the release of the lead single from this effort, “Coins Upon the Eyes,” it was almost certain the band would slay fans and unbelievers alike once more. But, does the rest of Necrocracy really stand as a brutalizing Death Metal assault, or is this lead audio stream the only promising bit?

Yes, “Coins Upon the Eyes” is a solid track, and really the only one of its kind on here. The music has a good deal of blasting drums and catchy, yet slightly technical guitar work that does make things relatively crushing. The main verses have a strong twangy bass presence, as does the rest of the release, which carries the groove of the song. The pace picks up after the first set, making it harder to not bang your head along throughout. The atmosphere is rather dismal, and should be enjoyed here since it’s criminally absent from later songs. “The Shape of Deaths to Come” also acts like a fish out of water. It finds the two-step drumming really standing out instead of the bass. While heavy, it’s far from crushing most of the time thanks largely to the speed and somewhat creepy hooks that oddly give it an upbeat vibe that you’ll immediately want to mosh to.

“Necrocracy,” however, does retain a solid aggression that the deeper bass guitar and kicks compliment well. There’s a little more complexity here, especially in the timing of the chorus. Around the well executed, yet rather out of place guitar solos, you do have punishing Grindcore blasting that feeds into the tone the chorus gives off, kind of mirroring the environment “Coins Upon the Eyes” had. “Ravening” ends up a solid performance all around with a grim tone at work. The quicker speed and a few small hooks feed into that tone nicely, and what few blast beat fueled sections exist amp what little hostility exists, which is far less than “Carrion Call” offers. This one has a great deal of energy on display, the timing changes quite often, and it swaps out between hook fueled madness, attitude laced grooves, and blistering Grindcore assaults, all driven by pure authority. There also is a slower guitar solo about two minutes and twenty seconds in that trudges things along for a bit, but given the mayhem behind the performance, it ends up fitting in nicely, unlike with “Dysmorphic.”

“Dysmorphic” may be the weakest track of them all, but that’s not saying it’s bad. The performance is largely mid-tempo with a groove the twanging bass really carries. The music does have some aggression behind it, and there’s a good deal of short guitar solos that act more like bridges, helping to keep the energy alive until the music slows at the half way mark for more creepy chords. Sadly, this time around it just ends up interrupting the steady flow, and builds itself back up through an extensive guitar solo. Due to the lack of steam it has at this point, reaching the end seems to take forever, and makes you wish it actually ended when the dropping of pace occurred.

While Necrocracy makes for a solid slab of Death Metal from the reunited legends known as Exhumed, it isn’t going to win a lot of awards. Admittedly, the atmospheres on the album vary heavily, and it spans various takes on the Death Metal genre entirely. There also isn’t anything too unique to this album, coming off a bit standard after only a few tracks in. But, even with all that said, this ends up another quality album from Exhumed you simply won’t get tired of. This is an effort from a band that knows what they’re doing, and know how to do it right. Nearly every track still hits the listener hard, and there are plenty that carry some memorable riffs, drumming, and dual vocals, pushing by a dominating bass presence in the guitar and drum kit. If you’re a fan of Exhumed, or just looking for a kick ass album for any occassion, then Necrocracy is easily a day one purchase.

01. Coins Upon the Eyes – 4:03
02. The Shape of Deaths To Come – 4:37
03. Necrocracy – 4:09
04. Dysmorphic – 4:45
05. Sickened – 4:44
06. (So Passes) the Glory of Death – 4:25
07. Ravening – 3:59
08. Carrion Call – 3:56
09. The Rotting – 3:51
Initial Pressing Score: 8.5/10

 (band)
Exhumed

Digital review copy of this release provided by Relapse Records.