Heavydeath – In Circles We Die (Iron Bonehead)Thursday, 1st December 2016
Never a band to rest on their laurels…or rest much at all for that matter – they’ve been a part of five smaller (EP/demo) releases since their first full-length, last year’s Eternal Sleepwalker, was released. So it goes without say that they’ve had their warm-up in prep for this sophomore effort. And as such, In Circles We Die delivers more deathly doom that should catch the interest of genre fans.
Everything from Celtic Frost to Black Sabbath to Type O Negative to Katatonia can be found if you want to draw some comparisons across the board, but that also speaks to Heavydeath’s variety. With the focus on doom, you can expect a lot of slow and lumbering riffs – and while these tend to stick on the simpler side of things, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. Much of the riffing tends to stick, and for a doomier album, it can be decidedly catchy in that regard. Sure, there are a few moments when the riffs tend to stick around just slightly longer than they should (see “Rope of Emptiness”) but overall, the fuzzed up guitars of “As We Foretold” and “Bleak Future” will have you bobbing your head in approval. The band also varies the vocal approach, going from the usual deathly grunts into clean vocals on occasion, with the gothic tone of “The Few Remains” being one of the album’s greatest treats. If there’s one thing to nitpick, it’s the lack of little speed bursts (which were more prevalent last time) – at over an hour, there’s a lot to digest here.
If you like no-frills doom death that succeeds in providing a template that keeps it both enjoyable and simple, In Circles We Die is another solid release from Heavydeath. It may not push the boundaries, but it’s done in a way that augments its strengths – nothing wrong with that.