Blood Red Throne – Blood Red Throne (Sevared Records)

Tuesday, 11th June 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

Probably the top practitioners of Norwegian death metal (remember when Jack Osbourne called Meshuggah the same thing?), Blood Red Throne have endured a difficult time keeping their profile afloat on this side of the pond, due in large part to zero label support and the fact us Americans think everything from Norway is black metal. Being that the band’s sound is decidedly non-geographic, it has made for some crushing adventures, particularly 2003’s marvelous Affiliated with the Suffering. Alas not much has changed other than the band’s lineup between then and their seventh album, which is going the self-titled route.

Lone original member and guitarist Dod knows how to pack in those tight, compact compositions, and the album’s 35-minute running time is best suited to be engulfed all at once. BRT hits hard and often, using flavors of Florida on “In Hell I Roam” and “Primitive Killing Machine,” as well as rolling, palm-mute action on “Hymn of the Asylum.” The dynamics that carried the aforementioned Affiliated with the Suffering aren’t as prevalent here, yet there’s no backing down from “Exoneration Manifesto” and “March of the Undying.”

There’s no retro-fit to this album, nor any sort of clamoring for days of yore, which in a way, makes Blood Red Throne still an enticing death metal proposition. Like we were saying – there’s not as much fervor or buzz around these guys these days, but don’t discount or diminish what they’re doing for death metal, which is a heck of a lot more than some people can say.

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