Cerekloth-In the Midst of Life We are in Death
Danish death metal. Those words will always find a receptive audience. Especially with me. For you see my friends and fellow lovers of all things extreme to me it's like the sound of a newborns first cry. It's a sweet and soul tugging sound. It's like sugar. You might find yourself saying "Did Andy really just compare this quintet to the joy that is a child's first sound?". To these ears sure. Why not? Think about it. What a wonderful world we indeed live in when crushing metal like this is allowed to not only exist, in it's own beautiful way, but it also can grow and mature until such a time when it too can stand proudly on it's own two feet .This new album finds Cerekloth walking tall and steady. As the band has shuffled about, with far too many line-up changes to make mention of right now, they have now found themselves in a position where their sound is not only as brutal as possible, but it's crushingly original! This one has all the hallmarks of classic death metal, but with the added benefit of venomous Slayer-like thrash. It is more Death (the band) then Slayer, but the lead guitar work is especially worthy an album like "South Of Heaven". Other then the mighty Death there is some Pestilence and Suffocation influences that ring out to me. In saying that though it's not a deterrent as Cerekloth take the greats, gut them, and then re-assemble everything piece by bloody piece. Topping the extreme nature of this band off with punishingly harsh vocals only adds to the high level of intensity. As a critic and as a fan I've heard my fair share of raw lead vocals but this one has a "I've been chewing on glass and gargling gasoline" edge to it that makes things only bigger and better! These vocals are the sort that are delivered in an almost hardcore fashion. It's the kind where it sounds as if the vocalist is trying to rip his (or hers!) own throat out and shove them in your face. When your lead singer (the great JBP) has a mohawk maybe that's to be expected? Hidden in plain site (in regards to these tracks) is a band that has all this technical know-how (there is a shit-load of talent with this particular line-up) and the ability to pull it off while simultaneously delivering what could almost be called "muscular metal". This is yet again one of those bands who must be nothing short of lethal in a live setting. With only 2 EPs and demo to their name ("In the Midst of Life We are in Death" is the band's full-length debut album) these guys already have forged their own identity. When you're debut album is as hell-bent for death and destruction as this one is there's no way to predict just how far you'll go. If I was a gambling man, and the various members of Cerekloth were to devout all of their time and energy into just this band, I'd easily lay down my hard earned money and wager on this band becoming one of the giants of the death metal scene in a few (short) years time!