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Album Reviews : Annihilist – Vol. 1

By on January 17, 2016

a4107644950_16It’s all about hooks and riffs on the debut from Melbourne’s Annihilist, taking equal parts from European melodeath and the whole modern American metal style. Unlike so many other bands taking it in a tough, mosh-heavy direction though, these guys pull it off without that air of shallow macho-ness.

That is in part thanks to vocalist Harry Pendock who channels Machine Head’s Rob Flynn rather than just an onslaught of meaty growls. Musically the rather short breakdown in “Prevail”, usually an easy thing to throw into a song, is perhaps the most out-of-place moment here. Especially next to “Sink” and the opening of “Against the Wall” which show how heavy they can be with more interesting, still headbangable, material.

The EP opens and closes on it’s strongest notes. “Solace in Suffering”, a re-recording from the first demo, has the kind of fists-in-the-air/growl-along chorus that will thrive in the live setting, with an overall perfect balance of their more technical riffage and more Euro-style melody. On the other end “Embers” sits at 8 minutes long and is where it gets truly interesting, introducing clean guitars and surprisingly uplifting final climax.

So while Vol 1 is in no way a groundbreaking release, it’s a summation of all the good parts of the punchier metal genres, with some extra technical flourishes and superb melodic sections that hint at a wider scope. Let’s hope their forthcoming full length, which is definitely worth keeping an eye out for, expands on those.

About

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.