2014 sees Dutch Death-metallers Thanatos celebrating their thirtieth year as a band, and to celebrate, they’ve dropped a nice new slab of brutality. Global Purification (Century Media) is the band’s sixth full length, and even into their third decade they can still keep up with bands half their age.
From the off, what you’re treated to is a shade under 40 minutes of abrasive thrash-influenced death metal. From the opening title track to the band, [Stephan Gebédi (Vocals, Guitars), Paul Baayens (Guitars), Marco de Bruin (Bass), Yuri Rinkel (Drums)] sound like a barely contained explosion of rage. Gebédi’s guttural vocals, the relentless barrage of drums and copious amounts of neck-busting shredding combine to deliver a slab of well-delivered classic-sounding death metal.
There’s plenty of relentless savagery on offer. Every track delivers a pounding dose of aggressive chugging riffs and pummeling drums (‘Infestation of the Soul’, ‘Blood Will Be Spilled’) – but Thanatos aren’t afraid to show off some dexterity. ‘The Murder of Innocents’ starts at full speed before segwaying into an intricate set of guitar solos, while ‘Feeding the War Machine’ is nice groove-laden thrash number that wouldn’t be out of place on a Slayer album, yet surprises with a Black metal-influenced interlude. The album sounds great, too, which only makes those more melodic moments shine through.
‘Demonized Minority’ is a slower, ominous track that builds to a blasting end, while ‘Word Jihad’ is a full on death metal shredder complete with whammy dives, while closer ‘Bastion of Blasphemy’ wears its galloping thrash influences on its sleeve. One of the best aspects of this album is the flurry of solos – furious and melodic, they add something special to each track.
Thanatos know they do well and stick to it; aggression, brutality and storming solos. And they do it really well. It’s impressive to see a band with so many years under their belts to still be releasing such intense and aggressive records. Global Purification doesn’t reinvent the wheel at any point, but the energy Thanatos bring to the table ensures it doesn’t get old.