Decapitated – “Anticult” (Nuclear Blast)
Right from the off in the mid 90s, these Poles have made an impression. Back then of course, it was down to their teen youth coupled with their astonishing technical capability that raised plenty of eyebrows. Now, some 20 years later and on this 7th release, the band have once again struck gold, and remarkably so with just 8 songs and a total run time of under 40 minutes! In 2 decades there’s been a lot of water under the bridge, not in the least the death of drummer Vitek in 2007 aged just 23 and the comatoseness of vocalist Covan. Nevertheless, founder guitarist Vogg has taken the band back from the brink to become today a globally recognized touring name. Along the way, the initial blast beating death metal Decapitated played has seen new styles incorporated and “Anticult” reflects that maturity with the emphasis on quality in every aspect of the material. Incorporating thrash and blackish aspects, not to mention groove, the songs are more compressed and not just a one speed tempo, showing the confidence of the band in their composing and arrangements to create an impressive listen from start to finish. Songs like ‘Kill The Cult’ deal with the destructive qualities of humanity and the raging Machine Head heavy riffing and double bass furor tell it all, although accompanying Rasta’s hoarse vocals are tastefully laced metallic melodies and even a rock n roll main solo! On ‘Earth Scar’ the groove is simply amazing, alternating perfectly with Rasta’s rhyming lyrics along with the precision beats of Michal Lysejko hitting home in perfect unison so much so that if it wasn’t so aggressive – not counting the quieter passages – you could probably dance to it ha ha. My favorite track though, had to be ‘Never’ which although hammering and chopping also had a definite commercial edge offering accessibility to an even wider circle of potential fans through its suave tempo changes, catchy chorus and quieter pieces offering momentary pause before being consumed by some monster catchy grooves! Rather than poignantly reflect, Decapitated have chosen to rise with this bold release that has all the hallmarks to see them stand with the best of their nation.