Voodoo Gods – “The Divinity Of Blood” (Reaper Entertainment)
Initially formed under the name Shrunken Head in 2008, Voodoo Gods is an evolving death metal supergroup that at one point featured Nergal (Behemoth) and David Shankle (Manowar) in its line ups along with the mainstay of drummer Alex Voodoo (Union, Guerrilla), vocalist Seth Van Der Loo (Deicide, Severe Torture, Bloodsoaked etc), guitarist Jacek Hiro (Decapitated, Dies Irae, Septic etc) and bassist Jean Baudin (Nuclear Rabbit, Element Of Surprise). On this sophomore, it’s Cannibal Corpse’s George ‘Corpsegrinder’ Fisher and guitarist Victor Smolski (Rage, Lingua Mortis Orchestra, Almanac etc) who make their presence ably felt on the 11 tracks of superior death metal all executed to flawless perfection! With a matching sound thanks to the production by Andy La Rocque (King Diamond), “The Divinity Of Blood” sets itself apart right from the get go of opener ‘Isa’, stampeding in through double bass drumming, whirring riffola and Corpsegrinder’s guttural drawls suavely offset by Smolski’s beautifully melodic guitar and some stylish lines from the 11 string bass of Baudin – now that’s something you don’t hear everyday! Indeed, flowing in virtuosically on ‘Forever’, the prominent melodic leads complete with fast scaling superbly contrasts the dual screams and gutturals of Van Der Loo and Corpsegrinder as Baudin brings in his ERB talent while Voodoo maintains an excellent percussive beat, and all to an overall epic atmosphere that is as deep as it is hugely catchy. Slowing it down on ‘From Necromancy To Paraphilia’ the riffs and pistoning drums are synced to perfection and the overall effect is breathtaking as quieter moments are suddenly contrasted by neo classical blastbeats, while the Spanish guitar blended with wailing electrical axe wizardry left me mesmerized on this near 7 minute wonder of exoticism. Ending in ‘The Absolute Necessity To Kill’, the blinding virtuoso pyrotechnics and blast beating ferocity was as impressive as it was scary on this brutal 6 minute soundscape, although again, the catchy riffs, excellent tempo changes and intelligent arrangements offering exciting and unpredictable twists really demonstrated the elite level talent on show here. The Divinity Of Blood” is a masterful performance throughout in every regard leaving little wonder to its overall score.