The Final Conflict: Last Days Of God
posted on 11/2009 By:
For nearly twenty years, Acheron have toiled away in relative obscurity. Near-comedic lineup woes and sporadic recorded output have rendered their name as one that is merely known—and not often praised—in subterranean circles. However, lone mainstay Vincent Crowley (vocals/bass) has kept this Satanic deathmachine rolling (albeit slowly) and The Final Conflict: Last Days of God is a rumbling, satisfying slab of old-school death-fucking-metal.
The concept of The Final Conflict isn't exactly novel—an apocalyptic tale with the forces of rebellion emerging victorious—but it certainly serves the album well. The aptly titled opener, "The Apocalypse," sets the stage with authority. For the uninitiated, Acheron's attack has a Floridian base, with a chunky, semi-thrashy lean towards the Obituary school. A penchant for sporadic, organic blasting and a decidedly diabolical lyrical bent adds a blackened edge, and "The Apocalypse" whips all these elements into tasty microcosm for the band's 2009 incarnation. After a riotous gate-crash, the band switches gears and launches into some wicked soloing, in turn creating one of the year's mightier DM juggernauts.
The remaining songs follow a similar pattern. Crowley typically stomps on the gas pedal straightaway, snarling and spitting his way through a bumpy hellride. Then, mid-cruise, he takes the band through a scenic blastway of killer guitar interplay, where classic leads wage war with burly, dirty riffing. The resultant carnage is impressive. Mid-album anthem "I Am Heathen" is a thrashy, straightforward banger, and arguably The Final Confict's highlight. "A New Age" also impresses, as the sheer heaviness gauge gets pushed into the red as the track churns to a close.
While far from essential listening, The Final Conflict is a certifiably solid offering from a band that seemed doomed to toil in the shadows. The fact that this is only their second album since 1998 has certainly held them back (as has the questionable quality of their previous output), but with Ibex Moon bringing this album to a stateside audience (it saw European release by Displeased earlier this year), Acheron should enjoy some positive return. Hopefully this lineup continues to flourish, because every death-obsessed metalhead would be well served to add rippers like “Salvation Through Hatred” to their regular diet.
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