By: Richard Maw
Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 24/03/2017
Label: Nuclear Blast
There is no huge introduction needed here. Bolt Thrower may be over, but Memoriam are very much here and ready to take up where Karl Willett's previous troop left off. You know what to expect from the names involved: crushingly slow grooves, like a tank rolling over piles of bones, bursts of thrash tempos and a sound that is thicker than tar.
“For The Fallen” CD//DD//LP track listing:
2. War Rages On
3. Reduced To Zero
4. Corrupted System
6. Surrounded By Death
8. Last Words
There is no huge introduction needed here. Bolt Thrower may be over, but Memoriam are very much here and ready to take up where Karl Willett's previous troop left off. You know what to expect from the names involved: crushingly slow grooves, like a tank rolling over piles of bones, bursts of thrash tempos and a sound that is thicker than tar. If you combined Cerebral Fix, Benediction, Napalm Death and Bolt Thrower, surprisingly enough... you may well get a band like Memoriam! From the title track through “War Rages On” and “Reduced to Zero” all of those traits are delivered in spades. The emphasis here is on the slower end of the tempo spectrum and the band are never less than devastatingly heavy.
At only eight tracks, but with half of that number tipping well over six minutes or more, the record is perfectly paced and does not out stay its welcome. It seems almost a moot point, but for fans of Bolt Thrower, this is a must. It also presents a curiously British take on the death metal genre; it has a punk vibe and delivery and certainly none of the tech traits of American bands. This is a master-class in grinding, doomy death metal with a distinctly old school flavour.
“Corrupted System” would be a fine example of the band's crustier side- albeit that the running time and changes it encapsulates lend themselves to more metallic territory. “Flatline” makes for more Bolt Thrower-esque sturm and drang and is very heavy indeed; skull crushingly so. The tracks just keep coming, one as heavy as the next: “Surrounded By Death” has that caterpillar track groove down pat and is head banging heaven. “Resistance” is heavy and dark in equal measure before the finale of “Last Words” brings an emotional depth and weight that is perhaps unexpected from a band operating in this genre.
It would be churlish to find fault here. This is exactly the record you would expect from the persons involved and it delivers on every level that you would expect it to. Many will perhaps dismiss this, or bracket this, as a Bolt Thrower knock off, but there is more here than that and also... you have to expect more than a few shades of that classic band here. Memoriam are only playing one date in the UK for all of 2017 at Manor Fest in Keighley, West Yorkshire on May 13th, so I strongly advise you to get a ticket, get the album and check the band out for yourselves. I will be going and can't wait to hear these tracks played in a live setting.
“For The Fallen” is available here
Band info: facebook