Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Ancient Obliteration- A Menacing Reality

Ancient Obliteration is a death-thrash band from Canada. The band formed back in 2006 and have a demo, EP, split, and live album under their belt. This is their first full-length to date and the wait pays off. Clocking in at a bit more than thirty minutes A Menacing Reality packs in more diversity than I initially expected. This isn't your run of the mill knuckle dragging thrash album, but Ancient Obliteration isn't out to reinvent the genre either. They have a few tricks up their sleeve and it makes for an all around enjoyable listen.

Upon first listen I wasn't quite sure what to think of A Menacing Reality. That being said, after a few listens the album really begins to click. The dirty guitar tone featured on the album fits Ancient Obliteration's overall sound perfectly. When intertwined with the punchy bass it makes for nice stomach churning grooves, this is most noticeable on tracks like "Lust For The Curse" and "Professor Of Black Magic". A good portion of the guitar playing just consists of simple, catchy riffs but the players do enough to show that they know how to handle their instruments. The bass adds a great deal of griminess to the overall sound, making each note heavier than the last and the guitar hits just as hard, almost to the point where it seems as though they are trading blows.

The production on A Menacing Reality allows Ancient Obliteration to pack twice the punch they did before. The past releases had a sound that was fairly flat. Don't expect this to have an extremely polished sound by any means, in fact, Ancient Obliteration is pretty much anything BUT polished. The production fits the loose playing on the record. At times it feels as though the music train is about to derail and cause an explosion of Michael Bay proportions. Luckily this never happens and Ancient Obliteration holds it together. This feeling adds an element of excitement to A Menacing Reality giving it an uncontrollable vibe.

The vocals here vary quite a bit. For the most part they switch between mid to low growls. At times clean vocals are used and they are typically delivered in a nonchalant manner. The cleans keep the listening experience fresh and fun and often come across as playful. Ancient Obliteration's lyrical themes tend to gravitate towards monsters and other odd subjects. The first track on the album "Radiated Overlords" is actually dedicated to the old school 50's B-movie THEM! With inspirations like that and songs with titles like "Giant Devilfish" what's not to love?

Overall A Menacing Reality is a solid release. Ancient Obliteration are definitely showing some improvement when compared to their previous releases. It seems each time they put something out there has been at least a slight tweak in their sound. Fans of death and/or thrash metal will be pleased with this album to say the least. Ancient Obliteration still has plenty of room for improvement, but considering this is their debut full-length it slays twice as much as I had expected. Give this one a listen.

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