Misery Index [USA]
The Killing Gods
Season of Mist
Finally, Misery Index drops their latest full length album, The Killing Gods, coming in just in time with my obsession with intense and high octane death metal, and after four years of anticipation since their last studio release in 2010, Heirs to Thievery.
While Misery Index has over the years come to be known for the intensity and grind-infused style of death metal, album opener Urfaust gives the listener a slightly different vibe, with the high melodic elements that are on the album, but without further ado, the band heats things up with The Calling, and once again it is business as usual. The riffs of Mark and Darin quickly bring in the usual Dying Fetus comparisons, though there are also moments throughout the axe-wielding duo presents a style that is also rather akin to Decapitated in the technicality displayed along with that tinge of groove that is infused. Of course, my personal highlight on such releases are on the drums, with Adam providing much of the speed and muscle with his almost effortless-sounding blasting.
As Urfaust has already hinted to the listener, The Killing Gods sees the band exploring a slightly more melodic side of their songwriting, and there are numerous moments on the album which go toward displaying this. For instance, moments such as the end of The Calling and the interlude The Oath see Misery Index playing with some acoustic/clean guitars, adding a fresh touch to their high speed musical style. The latter even has some sound samples of ravens cawing at the background, displaying the atmospheric element that the band has now included in their aural onslaught.
A friend (or rather professor) of mine, when introduced to the technical style of bands such as Archspire commented on how bands have such heavy focus on speed and technicality that they have lost that groove in their songwriting. Misery Index with The Killing Gods manages to avoid this pitfall, and has in fact managed to bring together elements that make death metal such an enjoyable genre, with a perfect balance of crushing heaviness, grooviness and melody to make this album one that is extremely enjoyable and headbang-able.