Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Malefice-Awaken the Tribes

Metal Blade Records

British heavy metal seems to be getting a much needed shot of adrenaline by the sounds of Awaken the Tribes. Hailing from Reading, Berkshire, Malefice was formed in 2003 while it's members were in college. Even though their 2007 full-length debut album Entities was the talk of the town and getting rave reviews in the English press the band remained relatively unknown outside of Europe. A punishing affair the album (along with 2009's Dawn Of Reprisal) showed a band that mixed thrash, death and mathcore into a sonic brew best ingested loud! With Awaken the Tribes the band again crafts a record that equals the most recent works heard in top tier technical thrash bands. Melodic thrash/death moves with no resistance over mathcore and power metal on Awaken the Tribes. While their early work recalled Pantera and Lamb Of God this new material moves further along offering wonderful opportunities to explore new creative ideas. Having shared the stage with Anthrax, Arch Enemy, Sepultura, DevilDriver and Morbid Angel you can see those bands were not lost on Malefice. In fact one of my favorite songs on the album (the excellent "Baying for Blood") is arranged in such a way that one can't help but draw a line towards Master Of Puppets era Metallica. No, there isn't retro-thrash copy cat material on display here. This is far too modern and precise. It frankly deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as it's recommended fan base. In it's R.I.Y.L. list the promo mentions the bands Darkest Hour, DevilDriver, Misery Signals and Lamb of God. With maybe the exception being Lamb Of God those other bands don't offer much more than Malefice does. At least in the this field Malefice offer interesting, catchy, well arranged and progressive tinted heavy melodic death/thrash that should take them far. No hype needed in my mind these guys are the real deal and if Metal Blade Records can get them to break through here in the U.S. then Malefice have all the tools needed to succeed.


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