Beyond - Fatal Power of Death
Iron Bonehead Productions
Death metal
8 songs (50:08)
Release year: 2013
Reviewed by Charles
Surprise of the month
This is the first full-length from Beyond, a German death metal band whose music is an impressive and free-flowing amalgamation of black and death, of old and new. Throughout Fatal Power of Death (yes, apparently death is fatal now) all sorts of goodies lurk, waiting to be unearthed by the curious listener. Diseased slow riffs in the vein of Desecresy, Cianide or Necros Christos are liberally strewn in between passages of blisteringly intense, black metal-inspired blastbeats. It’s all thrown together with a nonchalant flair, suggesting a talented band well worth keeping an eye on.

Structurally, the album is restless, even turbulent. Tracks rarely focus on one theme, instead tossing out one idea after another in a devil-may-care fashion. This unfocused approach reaches its epitome in the monstrous, 12-minute closer, Consuming Black Void, which drifts madly from its freaky opening sound effects (20th century classical music seems an inspiration) through creeping, crawling slow riffs, livid blasting, and doom-laden chanting (“Black Void! Black Void!”). Wayward, but also very effective. And while the rest of the songs here are much shorter, they follow a similar line of attack.

Highlights abound, but let’s pick out some tracks which are particularly worth hearing. Proper opener Merciless at Heart bucks violently between up- and down-tempo hooks, like one of those electric bull things that Americans ride after their line dances, except… an electric bull in the shape of a cloven-hooved demon, to make it less country and western, and more metal!! The riffing is often so dense and fast that it comes on a bit like merciless tech-thrashers Hellwitch, like on Whirlwinds which climaxes with a squealing, abstract guitar solo. We also get Beyond’s take on tech-death: listen to Schizopsychotic Eruption, with its violently contorted riffing- it’s like the twisted songwriting of Origin or the like, delivered in a properly wizened old-school manner.

And, what else? Loads, I guess. The irresistible Cianide-like grooves of Definite Decease, or the sick screeching of Appearance from Beyond, which reminds me of the great-but-ignored Welsh black metal band Ghast? I could continue, but I won’t. Suffice to say, this is an album full of highlights, which, if you like death metal, you would be foolish to ignore.

Killing Songs :
Schizopsychotic Eruption, Whirlwinds
Charles quoted 80 / 100
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