Let me start this off by saying that Coldwar‘s Pantheist is phenomenal. It’s gonna get a good grade from me, but unfortunately, I have a few negative things to say about it.

Coldwar is a machine, and on Pantheist, they are in prime form. Despite all the negative press about his choice of tattoos, Trevor McLave snarls and howls like a fucking madman, though for some reason the band decided to bury his vocals in the mix. This seems like a mistake to me, but it was probably the way they intended to go about things. The band is locked together, as they should be after 15 years as a band. And here’s where things start to get a little bit negative. Because they are so in sync, it makes the record relentless. Ordinarily, this is a good thing, but Jesus fucking Christ, I had to take a small break during “Abandonment of Being” because of the savagery of Pantheist. Thundering double-bass kicks combined with the fierce tones of guitarists Paul Nash and Dave Greene make this record an overwhelming one to listen to.

This is bleakest record I’ve listened to in recent memory. I know some bands who think their records are depressing in nature emotionally, but this record is just depressing overall. All these crappy emo bands gaining popularity nowadays should snag this record and take a page from Coldwar, because these guys are masters at creating moods that offer no hope for sunlight or happiness.

This isn’t a record for everyone. It’s not a record you’ll play for your friends to convince them that metal indeed rules supreme over all the bullshit they consider music. Pantheist is a record you hoard for yourself when you’re fed up with the world and everyone in it. This album will compliment your foul mood.

Pantheist is out now on Candlelight Records.

Rating: 4/5 Stars