Release DetailsLABEL Listenable
RELEASED ON 11/2/2005
The New Age of Chaos
posted on 11/2005 By:
Since their entrance into the scene, Vile have released two strong albums and attracted a fair amount of attention for their efforts. I’ve been a fan of the band for a while, and though I was eager to hear the new disc, I had no idea that I would find myself this impressed by it. I felt that Stench of the Deceased, though extremely enjoyable, wasn’t especially unique, and I found their more recent one, Depopulate, to be slightly uneven though well written in its own right. However, The New Age of Chaos, a furious diatribe against radical Islam set to some of the most inventive deathgrind I’ve ever encountered, is the album that sets Vile apart from the rest of the scene – if you gravitate towards death metal, this recording is essential.
Who would have imagined that deathgrind could be emotionally evocative? The genre, usually known for its relentless percussive assault, can hardly be described as moving. However, the tremendous songwriting present on this release has changed some of my ideas regarding what it is possible for an artist to do within the confines of the genre. This is in part due to the fantastic vocals of Juan Urteaga, who put together the thematic concept behind the music: Urteaga, already having decided that this would be his last album with the band, has recorded a very spirited performance. Though traditional death metal vocals are the most prevalent here, some great standout moments occur when he experiments with snarling black metal highs, often managing to reinforce the impact of some of the slower riffs. And it is truly these riffs that make the album great; Colin Davis is not afraid of the upper reaches of the fretboard and hardly ever relies on the dull low pitched palm muting or overly spastic runs that seem to plague the genre. Furthermore, Davis tempers the faster segments with brilliantly placed minor key melodies and mournful, unsettling transitional riffs; the emotional content is fully realized and utterly impressive due to its adroit execution.
This is certainly a guitar-based record, with the vocals also playing quite a significant role, but the backing rhythm section is just as impressive. Jack Gibson of Exodus fills in on bass, and to my mind the material that he plays here is much more interesting and probably more musically challenging than the stuff he plays with his main band. Tyson Jupin hits the skins, and his tasteful playing should not be overlooked. Naturally the production is about as good as it gets, considering the fact that Davis runs a mastering studio.
Vile have managed to take their writing to the next level with this record, which is one of the best I have heard this year. The New Age of Chaos couples astonishing intensity with slower, more deliberate passages that are no less forceful. I hope I am not overstating things with the following observation: this is one of the only deathgrind records I have ever listened to that I could classify as “art” with a straight face.
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