My buddy and I were talking about new releases a bit ago, and when Goatwhore came up, he said, “Goatwhore are the AC/DC of blackened thrash, no need to worry if their new album will be good, you know it will!” I couldn’t agree with him more. The band continue in the style they previously established, but they still keep Vengeful Ascension interesting and crushing. It has a different feel all together, as the band is now using their own sound man, Jarret Pritchard, as producer, instead of Erik Rutan, who produced the last four albums.
“Foresaken” opens the album in a flurry of riffs, then slows a bit while maintaining the heavy-as-hell feel. Ben Falgoust’s vocals are as fucking grim as ever, and Sammy Duet really proves he is a master of thrash and black metal riffs. “Under The Flesh, Into The Soul” brings forth the more traditional Goatwhore sound and feel. The title track, my favorite on the album, is slower and more melodic, yet it’s still dark and heavy. “Chaos Arcane” picks the pace back up to frantic. Zack Simmons powerhouse drumming really shows his talent on this song. “Where the Sun Is Silent” starts in a slow and brooding aura, and it builds to a dark feast of riffs. “Drowned In Grim Rebirth” sounds like the band are playing live in your headphones. The out-of-control freight train pace mid-song, amid Falgoust’s death metal-like vocals, really creates an evil essence here. “Mankind Will Have No Mercy” is the band’s tribute to Bolt Thrower, although the only thing that reminds me of them is the wartime lyrics and overtone. “Those Who Denied God’s Will” takes you out of the album as the band is hitting on all cylinders. It’s another fast and furious song, but it harnesses some melody.
Goatwhore have one of their best albums with Vengeful Ascension. The production is awesome, and it really does give the album more of a raw and live feel. While you certainly know who the band is on the first song, they offer enough new ideas to make the album not only interesting, but awesome!
Vengeful Ascension is out today on Metal Blade Records. Buy it here!