July 13, 2007 | , | 3.5

Crionics, Neuthrone

Hailing from Poland — a breeding ground for innovative death metal — CRIONICS deliver on Neuthrone a flavor of blackened death metal with an industrial and futuristic feel. The infusion of spacey, sci-fi orchestral keyboard elements on this latest release gives it a more unique feel, helping separate the band from the peers. It’s definitely a bit of a departure from the band’s earlier work that was steeped in black metal, but by infusing bludgeoning riffs, hell hammer drumming and a guttural vocal delivery with the new keyboard elements, CRIONICS have produced one hell of a monstrous album.

These death mongers haven’t completely abandoned their black metal roots as its influence is still at the heart of this album, especially in the vocal delivery and keyboard elements. Bringing in influences from BEHEMOTH, VADER and even FEAR FACTORY the overall feel of Neuthrone is one of a desolate and barren future.

Just over a minute’s worth of industrial, ambient noise to set the mood. Feel free to skip it in the future.

New Pantheon
After the intro, the band wastes no time getting down to business. Double bass pounds from the drums as ferocious riffs rip through the speakers. The keyboard elements are fairly strong on this song, giving it an earie feeling of doom — an intersting combination with the driving pace of the rest of the band.

Arrival 2033
“Arrival 2003” continues the theme of galloping double bass and ruthless riffs. Vocalist War-A.N. mixes up his delivery some with a few spoken lines as well as deeper more guttural portions. There hasn’t been much in the way of guitar solos on this first two songs.

Holy corpse paint this is a heavy track with enough black metal and thrash influence to level a small town. The erie keyboards only add to the gloomy outlook of the lyrics. I love the small breakdown starting at the 2:40 mark. It’s a welcome change from the double bass onslaught.

Blasts from the drums accompanied with futuristic keyboards start this one off before more earth leveling riffs kick in. There’s some crazy stuff going on in this track.

Hell Earth
Aside from the intro, this is the shortest track on the album. It’s a thrash fueled attack that’s fun as hell to listen to.

Humanmeat Cargo
A series of great riffs get us going with “Humanmeat Cargo.” This is one hell of a track — ginormous riffing, thunderous drums (which seem to be paramount through the album) and brutal vocals make this the best track on the album.

Outer Empire
If you like epic and sweeping structured songs, then you’ll love “Outer Empire.” It’s over the top futuristic keyboard work and unrelenting drumming make for an interesting dynamic. Again, War-A.N. mixes up his delivery to break up any monotony, providing spoken, guttural and higher pitch growls. There’s a strong black metal vibe to this song.

Frozen Hope
Sweeping riffs set the mood for the longest track on the album (5:40). Shortly after the mood is set, CRIONICS immediately shift direction with a plodding death march of pounding drums and vicious, moshing riffs.

When the Sun goes out
Lots of keyboard and spoken vocals dominate the first minute of this one before all hell breaks loose.

Black Warriors
“Black Warriors” is labeled as a bonus track, but it seems to fit in just fine with the rest of Neuthrone. The opening riff is something I could listen to on repeat. This is probably the most black metal track on the album.

~ ~ ~

CRIONICS have done a good deal of work to separate themselves from the Polish death metal crowd. By combining the musical elements from the likes of VADER, BEHEMOTH, and even FEAR FACTORY, as well as their own take on death metal, the band has created an album that is a ferocious, unrelenting blackened death metal beast.

Favorite Tracks:
New Pantheon
Humanmeat Cargo
Frozen Hope

Additional Notes:
This was an enhanced CD with a music video for the track Humanmeat Cargo