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Era Of Substitution
(Grom Records)

First off, Croatian Death Metal act DEFIANT does bring occasionally Polish Death Metal kings VADER to my mind - and maybe even DECAPITATED due to a few reasons: they are at least as instrumentally skilled and technical as their more known Polish comrades in the very question - and they sound as brutal and vicious as either the boys in VADER and / or DECAPITATED. They have also managed to create a nearly as catchy and ear-capturing record as some of those two aforementioned Polish Death Metal bands' best works. Yes, there's many good and even great things in DEFIANT that speak for their true potential to conquer a piece of ground for themselves on the vast field of Death Metal. DEFIANT's wise use of some unexpected breaks, twists and turns - as well as a remarkable amount of unorthodox song arrangements within their stuff, also turns out to be a successful recipe for them. Everything - and I really mean everything in them, sounds like they don't take things for granted at all when it comes to pushing some musically related limits further - sort of out of their comfort zone but always try to exceed some of these goals when some technical aspects of challenging and intriguing Death Metal are concerned. Some occasional blast-beats also tend to give an extra input for their songs to keep the tempo frantic and overall high but gladly they have wisely decided to keep them on a minimal level - just to avoid suffocating the songs totally into some blurry mass of disharmonious cacophony. It also needs to be said that the use of both Death Metal growls and deranged Black Metal vocal outbursts works well in DEFIANT's case as well, the main emphasis being on those Death Metal grunts though. The crunchiness of the guitars' sound earns some extra points for them as well, as that element is a pretty crucial part to make Death Metal to sound so tasteful, convincing and real thing in the first place in my opinion. The whole package really works pretty darn amazingly great for them although I have to say I found their cover version of 'Behind Space' by IN FLAMES quite an odd choice. Otherwise no any bigger complaints can be said about "Era Of Substitution"; it's an enjoyable and well done Death Metal record altogether. You may want to check it out too? If so, then go to DEFIANT's Myspace site:, label:

Luxi Lahtinen

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