Success Will Write Apocalypse Across The Sky

The Grand Partition And The Abrogation Of Idolatry

Written by: AP on 08/06/2009 13:15:48

I can't help but snigger at the thought of this band in a live setting, growling "Good evening! We are Success Will Write Apocalypse Across The Sky and this next song is from our debut album, "The Grand Partition And The Abrogation Of Idolatry!". One needs to have bucketloads of confidence (and self-irony?) to christen a band (and album) with such a preposterous name, but thankfully "The Grand Partition And The Abrogation Of Idolatry" is such a fine debut album it's tempting to put such preconceptions aside. Having not heard the music, it should be tempting to guess at the mere sight of the wall of text on this album's cover, that we are dealing with yet another self-important progressive metal band, but no, rest assured, there isn't a trace of anything progressive here.

What we have here is the polar opposite of everything that's wrong with the new wave of American death metal (also referred to as deathcore). Armed with the latest production technologies, these Florida upstarts grind through their abrasive, riff-laden death metal tongue-in-cheek with a natural ease that puts most deathcore bands to shame – and it’s not because it’s not technical, on the contrary. Still, technical proficiency in these circles is understood to be the standard and as such it isn’t all that awe-inspiring, but the fretwork here in terms of riffs is pretty fucking mind blowing. Although we’re still talking an infinity of riffs per song, SWWAATS excel where most bands of this kind fail: it’s actually cohesive and the songs don’t break down in random places to accentuate the brootality of the music with dissonance and horror chords, no, this band sounds genuinely brutal and iniquitous. Much of that owes to the wicked melodies that are central to SWWAATS’ song-writing and background samples, some of which sound like they’ve been recorded at the Tianmen square massacre, and others like what one might imagine to be the chanting of Aztecs during a sacrifice. These samples provide the album with a kind of dark, mystical atmosphere that actually sounds frightening.

In the rhythm section things are unsurprising but impressive no less, as is to be expected in this genre: plenty of blast beats, machinegun-drumming and abrupt rhythm changes which nonetheless adhere to an intricate and well-written structure. Vocalist John Collett, too, delivers solid if unsurprising vocals ranging from high-pitched squeaks to guttural growling, assisted here and there by guitarist Ian Sturgill (how does he scream like that and play those riffs at the same time?) and the eerie voices coming off the aforementioned samples. As such "The Grand Partition..." is a fantastic album in the walk-the-talk kind of way but apart from its brief excursions into the mystical (which – I cannot stress this enough – sound fucking cool) and cult-like anti-religious monologues, this album does not (even attempt to) break definitions and is certainly not as experimental as the band’s name and the album's title might imply. It's a highly recommended purchase for fans of extreme metal but do not expect the album of the year, expect a solid, well-written and modern take on the genre.

Download: 10,000 Sermons, 1 Solution, Agenda, One Must Imagine Sisyphus Happy

For the fans of: The Faceless, Ignominious Incarceration, Oceano

Listen: Myspace

Release date 06.04.2009

Nuclear Blast

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