When creating terrifying brutal old school sounding death metal you want a band that is going to put in that extra effort to really grab your attention with some corpse ripping riffs and demonic growls that sound like they are coming from some blasphemous world from beyond. Well, the Portland, OR based band, Petrification, is band that I believe knows how to raise the extreme music making bar and their new music definitely travels into some utterly extreme sounding realms.
Petrification’s debut album, “Hollow of the Void,” is an offering of pulverizing old school sounding death metal that echoes through the catacombs with pure unapologetic force. When Sentient Ruin sent me a promo copy of their first EP, “Summon Horrendous Destruction,” I could not believe how raw and bombastic the band sounded on each of those four songs. I felt like it was a mix of Benediction, Bolt Thrower and Swedish bands like Entombed and Dismember. The riffs provide a decimating sound while the vocals are presented in a truly gruesome and bellicose manner. Each track is simply a cataclysmic impact of old school death metal that from start to finish is very solid and very engaging.
The songs on this new album are produced in a style that I feel really represents what this band is all about, and that is to unleash an undeniable onslaught of monstrous old school death metal. Also, the musicianship is at a certain level to where I think the band as a whole is able to construct these powerful and complete pieces of extreme music. Unlike some bands who play death metal and sort of live off their names being brutal, Petrification’s sound is without question some of the heaviest and most bone crushing music you will find around.
I like how the album starts out with what sounds like an army of hungry spiders devouring a corpse in some dark remote cave and then decides to burst into one of the most ferocious sounding jams imaginable. The song “Arachne Exsanguine,” is massive assault of brutal riffs that provide a devastating impact of chord crushing aggression. Petrification’s vocalist is an extremely solid singer and I think he has an amazing delivery. The next song, “Technological Assimilation,” is a well written track and contains some strong thought provoking lyrics. This vocalist really steps up his game with the song’s vocal parts and I also thought the lead guitar playing was perfectly executed and recorded. Probably one of the top songs off the album and the music video they did for the song is also really impressive.
When I reviewed the EP, “Summon Horrendous Destruction,” I remember really taking a liking to the title track and I am glad that the band decided to add it to the new album. You are instantly drawn into a dynamic sinister sounding realm of old school death metal and become possessed by the gruesome sounding guitar tone. Another solid track is, “Hymn of Chaos,” where the band belts out more seismic instrumental compositions while the vocalist maintains his unforgiving brutal presence. Also, I want to point out, “Devouring Abysm,” which keeps a very death doom like tone throughout the song by slowly hacking away at a ghastly sounding main riff. The drummer also delivers a strong performance by leading music into that dark and hellish world off extreme musical insanity.
Overall, I thought Petrification did a tremendous job with their debut album, “Hollow of the Void.” There is definitely room for the band to take the music into more extreme and creative directions, but this is a great starting point, especially how they sounded on this release. Easily one of the strongest sounding up and coming death metal bands I have heard as of recent. Hell, offer these guys a chance to write a horror film and I think they would be able to come up with a concept more horrifying than the garbage Hollywood is currently putting in theaters.
Check out Petrification's video for “Technological Assimilation” below: