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Album Reviews : Thy Art Is Murder – The Adversary

By on December 13, 2010

Out of Western Sydney, Thy Art Is Murder has been tearing up the Australian touring scene for the last couple of years on the back of their debut EP Infinite Death. While the departure of original vocalist Brendan Van Ryn had the potential to derail their progress, the induction of Chris Mcmahon to the microphone added more guttural layer to the vocals, but most importantly kept the ball rolling for the five-piece. Much like numerous other Deathcore bands, with the release of their debut The Adversary, Thy Art Is Murder’s sound has evolved into more of a pure Death Metal concoction, while still retaining some of the stronger elements of their musical past.

After the intro track “Unholy Sermons”, the album truly gets under way with “Soldiers of Immortality”. With a Behemoth-esque main riff and Mcmahon’s vicious growls, the song shows off the newer aspect of the band’s sound, but with a breakdown of apocalyptic proportion that rears it’s head half way through the tune, it shows that the band is willing to keep some of their previous Deathcore aspects. While the lyrics on their EP dealt with the fairly immature theme of maiming ‘sluts’, The Adversary tackles the topic of anti-religion, as well as the occasional nod towards their gore fixated past.

“Laceration Penetration” features an epileptic intro riff with guitars insanely panning left and right, but it also shows off the Sydneyer’s immense tightness and some clever layering and key-changing. The unrelenting assault of tracks like “Decrepit Purification”, “Engineering the Antichrist” and “The False Prophet” doesn’t vary greatly, but the sheer quality of the tracks make up for any lack of dynamics. The production is decent enough, but it occasionally shows it’s flaws, as the bass drops sometimes clash with the cymbals to bring an undesired clipping effect – for example the first breakdown section in “Furnace of Hate”.

Guitarists Gary Markowski and Sean Delander never over play the songs with mindless fret wank, but they fire off the odd tasty guitar solo, showing off their adeptness with shredding runs and whammy bar screams. Despite his rather diminutive size, drummer Lee Stanton is a juggernaut behind the kit, as his time warping blasts and other worldly foot work carries the album along at a lethal pace. Epic closing number “Cowards Throne” is an amazing way the finish the record, with a mid-tempo intro that builds layer upon layer of guitar lines, before the door is kicked down by a blitzkrieg verse section. Markowski’s best solo of the album is also featured, with the axeman burning through technical runs and harmonics, before the track and album climaxes with a cerebral collapsing outro groove.

Thy Art Is Murder certainly has a lot of haters in the Death Metal scene for being too ‘core’, but The Adversary might just win over some new fans with the band showing a much more brutal and technical sound, but it has enough of their old elements to keep the original fan base of the band very happy indeed. 8/10

Band: Thy Art Is Murder
Album: The Adversary
Year: 2010
Genre: Death Metal
Origin: Sydney, Australia
Label: Skull & Bones

Track listing:

1. Unholy Sermons
2. Soldiers of Immortality
3. Laceration Penetration
4. Furnace of Hate
5. Flesh Oracle
6. The Adversary
7. Decrepit Purification
8. The False Prophet
9. Engineering the Antichrist
10. Requiem
11. Cowards Throne <- Reviewers Choice


Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.