Cianide - Gods of Death
Hells Headbangers
Death Metal
8 songs (39:30)
Release year: 2011
Cianide, Hells Headbangers
Reviewed by Charles
Chicago’s Cianide made their name on the early ‘90s death metal scene by churning out the genre’s most extravagantly slow tempos: rough-and-ready shambling-pace grooves that were as grimly weather-beaten as they were irresistibly catchy. Their classic (if little-known) 1992 debut, The Dying Truth, is a glorious statement of down-tempo riff-worship that foreshadows the cranky doom-death likes of Coffins (with whom they released a split in 2007), given an extra dimension of nastiness by Mike Perun’s guttural vocal delivery. In the long intervening period they’ve repeatedly gone away and come back again, though their last full-length was a full six years ago. Across the years their sound has moderated somewhat, so that it retains an emphasis on slow grooves but balanced by a more standard-issue mid-tempo death metal growl.

Thus, opener Desecration Storm is a standard-issue death metal bruiser comparable to reliable (but predictable) acts like Jungle Rot: a decent way to blow off the cobwebs but perhaps not the throat-grabber that you’d hope would open a comeback album. The more interesting tracks are the slower ones. Tracks like Forsaken Doom and Dead and Rotting are based around the most knuckleheaded death metal grooves I have heard all year, lurching from one rigidly simplistic headbanger to another, and given suitably feral character by Perun’s vocals.. And the highlight of the record is probably The One True Death, which spends its almost-nine minute running time creeping through sullen doom-death moods given a clumping weight by the deep, gravelly guitar tone.

Elsewhere, it’s a decent but unsurprising record, with the faster tracks mustering some potency despite their predicatbility. Idolator is particularly good, with its motoring Hellhammer-influenced riffing kicking up a punkish storm. Overall, Gods of Death doesn’t quite muster the same grisly character as 2011’s other down-tempo death metal old-timer effort- Autopsy’s Macabre Eternal; it feels a bit too crisp and crunchy as opposed to the squelching gore that drips from the latter’s every pore. Nonetheless, it’s a worthy effort from a band whose return is most welcome.

Killing Songs :
Idolator, The One True Death
Charles quoted 70 / 100
Other albums by Cianide that we have reviewed:
Cianide - Death, Doom and Destruction reviewed by Charles and quoted 80 / 100
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