Man Must Die – Peace Was Never An Option (Lifeforce)

Wednesday, 16th October 2013
Rating: 8/10

Tech-death is a polarizing beast, for more often than not it melts into something of a lavacannon of notes and gurgles, more than most can make sense of or appreciate. Sometimes, however, a band can manage to fuse the intensity and focus of extreme technicality and fuse it with a sense of melodic purpose and…(wait for it) the closest metal equivalent of songwriting. Pop anthems this collection of songs are not, but on Peace Was Never An Option Man Must Die have indeed assembled something that is rife with fantastic indulgences into the melodic, almost to the point of being sing-a-long (or growl along, if you prefer).

Blast beats and scales galore fill every corner of Peace Was Never An Option, but it’s on highlights like “Sectarian” and its obscenely infectious chorus-section that the zippy haze of technicality is used for more than instrument abuse. There’s a palpable build up for early album powerhouse “Hiding In Plain Sight,” even with the peculiar overtly political leanings of the surprisingly intelligible vocals (which, really, is the same throughout). That solo and subsequent melodic section though, IS FUCKING COLOSSAL.

The punishing is combined with the sweet-but-still-punishing as the album rarely relents in its obscene pace, but that’s okay. When the winds of brutality subside and the melody pours back into the limelight (monster of a closer “The Day I Died” is great for this) the results are nigh-stunning. While not an easy album to latch onto, even with its ample distribution of melody, there is much to be said for Peace Was Never An Option and why you should be throwing yourself at it. Waste no time, this is the perfect soundtrack for being flayed to this Halloween.

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