Nekromantheon – Divinity of Death

Posted on May 8, 2011




I don’t care that its opener, “Gringo Death,” fades in with a beat-for-beat imitation of “Hit the Lights.” I don’t care that it boasts cheesy song titles like “Alcoholy Terror.” And I don’t even care that it’s yet another entry into the “is it or isn’t it sincere” thrash revival scene kickstarted by kids whose parents were still courting when Show No Mercy hit the sun-cracked streets of Ventura. Because the debut album from Norway’s Nekromantheon is how this sound should sound. Divinity of Death is a completely honest homage to the darker side of thrash; more Dark Angel than Megadeth and more Sodom than Anthrax. Indeed, this trio knows it pedigree.

Drummer Kristian “Kick” Holm has mastered his lightning-quick Gene Hoglan waterfall tom fills. Co-vocalists and bassist/guitarist Sindre Solem and Arild “Arse” Myren Torp (please note the two nicknames), respectively, both nail Tom Angelripper’s grainy snarl. Nekromantheon’s thorough ass-kickery is vindicated by Solem and Torp’s membership in old school death merchants Obliteration, who have been relentlessly championed by Darkthrone drummer Fenriz, who also happens to be Norway’s official authority on all things metal. If blasts of classic Slayer like “Devolutionary Storms” and the fretboard finesse found on “Acid Visions” reach as many ears, this thrash project will prove to be just as praiseworthy. It’s always just barely in control. Like Holm’s sticks are going to fly out of his hands any second. Like Torp’s pick is going to entangle itself in his hair as he shreds his way through “Lex Talionis”’ 45 seconds of tremolo calisthenics. Like these guys could give one fuck about what any critic has to say regarding the marvelously grimy slab they’ve chiseled out of blown-out Peavey stacks, high-tops and denim jackets that serve only as canvases for patches. Both Teutonic string scorchers and bleach blond Cali dudes will be proud.

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