June 13, 2014 | , | 3.75

Demonical: Darkness Unbound, Darkness Unbound

Demonical: Darkness Unbound

Originally spawned from the ashes of Centinex, Johan Jansson (guitars & vocals), Martin Schulman (bass) and Ronnie Bergerståhl (drums) reconvened with Demonical with the sole goal of returning to their roots and delivering brutal death metal — of the Swedish variety of course. Now on their fourth full-length, Darkness Unbound, the band has hit their chugging stride.

Title track, “Darkness Unbound,” is a minute and a half long atmospheric instrumental, that does little to prepare you for the bludgeoning assault of “The Order.” This song hits like an un-manned steamroller rumbling down the road at an alarming rate of speed. This ain’t all go-go-go, however, as there is a solid amount of neck-snapping groove driving this massive song. It’s got telltale hints of early Entombed, Dismember and more as the guys shred through searing solos and churn out skull crushing riffage at will. At just two minutes (it feels much shorter than that) the song is over, leaving you drooling and wanting more.

“An Endless Celebration” is right there for you, satiating your fix for more churning old school death metal as buzzing guitars and one hell of an infectious groove and vocal pattern spread through you like a virus. This is one of those songs that is so memorable it sticks around long after the album has completed. “Contempt and Conquest” is an absolute beast of a track — it smoothly builds to a spine shattering tempo almost immediately and never lets up on the violent groove pedal.

Darkness Unbound is my kind of album. It’s powerful, not overly dynamic, bludgeoning and packed with head-banging groove. The slow burning “The Healing Control” is a great example of this. It’s a massively aggressive song, but never sacrifices groove or flow in the process of delivering as sharply and as violently as possible. “Hellfire Empire” keeps the blood flowing with a touch of Hail of Bullets in the mix as it marches along like an avalanche, smothering you with buzzing guitars and pile-driving drums.

Demonical may have been a band i’ve missed out on recently, but that’s not going to be the case going forward. Darkness Unbound has infected my brain with it’s churning old school death metal and forward-charging pace. This is the type of shit I could listen for days upon days.