Godless Rising is one of those bands that has a revolving cast of band members, and it seems the only founding member left of the group is the vocalist, Jeff Gruslin, a name that many will know from time spent with Vital Remains. Given the band members problems, this band still manages to churn out rather impressive releases, and this one is no different. Trumpet of Triumph is a very well done Death Metal album that blends in a nice Thrash feel to the riffs, as well as a classical Heavy Metal feel through the shredding guitar work and solos to create a rather unique sound that may seem strange at first, but is quite the opposite. To be blunt, this release is absolute chaos, in more positive ways then just one.
As mentioned, the music on Trumpet of Triumph is phenomenal, and at times seems to stem into the Avante-Garde musical performance style, such as during “Where is Your God”, and especially on “Damnation of Angelic Souls” through the vocal approach. On the latter, the vocals seem to stem into a more wailing, misery filled style that best captures the chaos that is being performed. These type of tracks on the release are really the ones that stand out the most because there’s just so much intensity in the music thanks to the accompanying slower Heavy Metal harmonies that are played over the faster, more brutal sounding guitars, as well as the powerful vocal performance and range presented.
The band also brings in some more tame songs compared to the somewhat Avante-Garde tracks. These tracks are not that bad at all, but definitely lack the same kick the others bring to the table. While many of these tracks are really good, such as “An Eternity in Hell” and “Christ Cadaver”, they really lack the energy that the opening tracks possess. Aside the lack of energy, these tracks are still brutal cuts worth listening to, like the title track “Trumpets of Triumph” which is just a ruthless Death Metal track that simply doesn’t let up with punishing Death Metal chords and matchingly evil vocals. The only odd ball track on this release is “Dante’s Inferno (Burn the Flock)” which is just an interlude that is supposed to be either a farm or a town burning, you hear women screaming and lambs crying out, then demonic laughter at the end. At least it goes with the overall atmosphere of the album before it lets “Warlords of Darkness” ring out the album on the same energetic note it started with. In essence, “Dante’s Inferno (Burn the Flock)” could have been left out, but it really makes no difference.
One of the main points of interest on this release lies in the vocals. Yes, the Heavy Metal guitar shredding and overlapping harmonies really do cause the album to stand out and have a rather unique sound, but the vocal range is something that really makes the release. First of all, the vocals go from either very deep gutteral to a more rhaspier evil sounding style. While it’s not much of a range, there are times on the recording that the audio is messed with to present a different vocal sound all together. The problem with this is that they didn’t hide it all too well in some cases. “Warlords of Darkness”, for example, has a section where the vocals sound very hollow, and the problem with that is you can hear the alterations to the vocals in the audio from it not being mixed in properly, whereas when compared to the opening track, “Where is Your God”, the hollow, commanding vocals here are blended in better, though the audio level in the background from this approach is still slightly apparent.
Either way, Trumpet of Triumph is a very unique experience that Metal Fans simply have to check out. The only problems here are some of the tracks that lack the energy that the album starts off with, but many of them are still solid tracks with a few scattered about that will have you bored and itching to hit the skip track button on whatever media device you’re listening to it on. Chances are, thanks to the vocal approach on this release, you won’t get into Trumpet of Triumph until a few tracks into the album, but when you do, you’ll be coming back for more right away.