Siege of Power – This Is Tomorrow (Metal Blade)

Monday, 20th February 2023
Rating: 7.5 / 10

An international collaboration between seasoned musicians well versed in the death metal world, Siege of Power released a debut album Warning Blast in the fall of 2018 that threw out a mix of crust/punk to thrash-oriented tunes which only hinted at possibilities for maximum impact. While the first record concentrated on quick hitting bursts of energy to move onto the next aural salvo, this second full-length This Is Tomorrow captures an expansion of riffs/movements into longer arrangements – tackling eleven tracks over the course of its forty-minute plus timeline. Could this be a case of more critical ears out of the gate, thus sticking to execution of ideas that retain the strongest staying power?

The undeniable low chugging riff factor next to a steady rhythm section stomp template allows “Scavengers” to be a front running favorite early on – vocalist Chris Reifert belting out the simplified one word chorus as if screaming for his supper. The accelerated d-beat proficiency of Bob Bagchus against the razor-sharp riffs from guitarist Paul Baayens brings “Zero Containment” and “The Devil’s Grasp” into that old school punk ethos twisting into thrash/extreme realms. Diversity is key for enduring engagement, so the quartet possess the right dynamic awareness to inject some clean, morose guitar play and lower, semi-talkative voicing for “Ghosts of Humanity”, while tackling some Viking-esque / Bathory-like epic atmosphere on the six-minute long “Deeper Wounds”, the mid-section digging deep into some evil, plodding doom passages. There seems to be more forethought when it comes to cohesive structures, musical part to part flow, beyond the obviously sinister savage vocal mastery Chris brings to the table each and every time – as you can feel the steady low, militant marching nature of the closing title track obliterate all senses, the bell tolls and drawn-out screams/guitar trills heightening that terror tenfold. The production values plus tones overall grip the listener for intensity, keeping everything at punishing levels yet at a live, off the floor output.

Definitely more of an improvement against the debut, This Is Tomorrow combines the experience, knowledge plus intuition within Siege of Power musician-wise to turn things into the ideal synthesis of punk/crust meets thrash/death the old school way.

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