The Cleansing

Poisoned Legacy

Written by: AB on 07/10/2009 19:05:42

OK, back log clearing time. Without having all too big an idea of just how many old albums I have promised PP to review, I am just going to do the easy thing and take the one on top of the pile. This turns out to be The Cleansing, a rather young Danish death metal band. Though The Cleansing is a new act in the Danish metal scene (they formed in 2007), the members are far from new kids on the block, coming from such well known groups as Usupian, Panzerchrist, Iniquity, Exmortem and so on. Quite the experienced bunch! Though I, in general, am quite disillusioned by the contemporary Danish extreme metal scene, this obviously raises my hopes a fair bit, as these bands have produced some of the very best death metal our little neck of the woods has to offer.

It is soon clear, though, that while this is very well played death metal, The Cleansing's "Poisoned Legacy" doesn't compare to a new classic like "Funeral Phantoms" (Exmortem) or Iniquity's old masterpiece, "Serenadium". While competent and technically well done, this album won't blow anybody away anytime soon. The Cleansing plays an "American" breed of death metal, pretty traditional, but modern-sounding at the same time. The entire album is packed full of melodic leads and solos, both showcasing the impressive handiwork of guitarists Lynge and Hasseriis, as well as providing some much needed counterbalance to the brutally blasting drums. This is by no means a neo-thrash/death-melodeath album, though, but rather a traditional death metal release with great focus on melodies. Said melodies work best, I find, when The Cleansing slows down a little and lets the axes do the talking instead of the growls and drums.

However, solid, indeed, good instrumentation does not necessarily make a good record. Granted, the album has grown quite a bit on me on my numerous repeated listens, but the song writing throughout "Poisoned Legacy" is not strong enough to keep me really interested. Except for the slow, crushing "The Domino of Phantom Effects", the songs all blur together in a mishmash of guitar solos, mid-to-fast-tempo run of the mill death metal and blast beats. This lack of progression on "Poisoned Legacy" is the biggest drawback of the record, as the boys obviously know how to handle themselves with their instruments, so with some thought invested in composition and songwriting, I'm sure they'll be able to do a much better effort. Next time.

Download: The Domino of Phantom Effects, Ghost Lights
For the fans of: Lay Down Rotten, Usupian

Release date: 09.06.2009
Deepsend Records

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