DEVOTION
Astral Catacombs
(Memento Mori)
43:37min

Since their first album, “Necrophiliac Cults”, this Spanish outfit has been developing a compelling style: slow, pounding Death Metal mixed with fast and intense outbursts adding some keyboard parts to accentuate the ambience. They didn’t deviate much from this path in their second album, “The Harrowing”. Now with their third album (and second released under the fine Spanish label Memento Mori), “Astral Catacombs”, they have built onto their trademark sound, adding more of that dismal and abyssic atmosphere which is on par with the density and intensity of their songs. There are influences of Scandinavian and German mid ’90s Death Metal with less Doom Metal segments and more “in your face” attitude. I think the first VITAL REMAINS album is a good comparison point, but with a bunch of interesting twists. DEVOTION pushes forward creating their own identity in an already saturated global scene. They have kept the eerie keyboard lines and pads; a perfect match to the powerful riffing and the detailed drum work, supported by a solid bass guitar and an excellent use of vocal phrasing. The performances are on point, showcasing a logical evolution in both interpretation and songwriting. The production is huge and oppressive, yet surprisingly clear. The mix is more focused, giving every instrument its place and filling the whole aural spectrum. The vocals are a tad pushed back, which I think is a practice borrowed from the ’90s. The guitar tone has a huge bottom end and a crisp top that combined with the distorted bass guitar is the perfect fit to the organic sound of the drums. After a bunch of spins, “Astral Catacombs” proves to be a bludgeoning experience every single time. DEVOTION has found their style and character and know exactly how to deliver some of the best Death Metal I have listened to in years. Show your support here: www.facebook.com/deathmetaldevotion. And get their album here: www.facebook.com/memento.mori.label

Alfonso Perez

Alfonso Perez

Related reviews / interviews:
DEVOTION - The Harrowing (Kat "Shevil" Gillham)
DEVOTION - Interview (Frank Stöver)

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