Published Jun 20, 2014Following 2012's Vanquish in Vengeance, the NYC-bred/Pennsylvania-based death metal pioneers Incantation have returned with Dirges of Elysium. Their ninth full-length since their 1989 inception, Dirges of Elysium is exactly what fans expect from Incantation, as they've never strayed too far from their classic death metal sound. However, as is the case with other bands from the early '90s New York scene, such as Suffocation and Immolation, change isn't necessary, nor desired. What founder/vocalist/guitarist John McEntee and company have done with Dirges of Elysium is maintain their traditional sound while incorporating enough twists and turns to keep things new and interesting.
The album features vicious riffs, whiplash guitar shredding, punishing drum blasts and McEntee's distinct deep gutturals. Unique time signatures and rhythm patterns are utilized throughout, while the addition of crushing doom elements interspersed among the fast, blazing death metal adds diversity and unpredictability. Incantation preserve their archetypal ominous atmosphere, while the production gives the band a more modern edge, making Dirges of Elysium a consistent yet fresh release from the influential band. (Listenable)