Thy Art is Murder – Godlike (Human Warfare)

Friday, 8th September 2023
Rating: 7.5/10

A band that has been very so slowly advancing their sound, moving from more traditional deathcore chugging to more of a modern death metal act (aka not relying solely upon breakdown power to define their music), Thy Art is Murder have been notably absent for a few years. The COVID epidemic actually causing the band’s guitarists to put down their instruments for two years, the band is finally back to follow up on 2019’s Human Target. So how has the downtime affected their sound? It certainly still sounds like Thy Art is Murder, but again, the band has taken some deliberate steps to get out of the deathcore cliches, and it all works for the better.

There’s plenty of the usual fury that Thy Art is Murder supplies, so long-time fans need not worry. The band’s short and to the point approach allows them to bludgeon without remorse, and tracks like “Corrosion” and “Destroyer of Dreams” have TAIM written all over them, complete with thunderous breakdowns, pummeling grooves, and frantic blastbeat segments giving rise to a sound dynamic that keeps it from getting boring. But what’s also noticeable is the addition of more grooves, and the doubling down on the atmospheric components that they have been striving for in more recent releases. “Blood Throne” has some absolutely thrilling groove sections to it, not in a deathcore way but in more of a modern metal dynamic that gives the song an odd, but fitting, sense of fun and it sits as one of the strongest songs on the album. The album’s last two songs, “Anathema” and “Bermuda” also see the band reaching further into atmospheric places. “Anathema” begins as a sledgehammer with plenty of blastbeats to go around, but dark grooves swirl around later alongside a punishing breakdown that feels as eerie as it does venomous. “Bermuda” expands upon this atmospheric sensation, with a brooding opening that’s coupled with electronics, allowing vocalist CJ McMahon to emotively growl above a slowly expanding base until chugging grooves take the track into even more murky territory.

While the main appeal of Thy Art is Murder remains intact, it’s nice to see that they are willing to make some shifts and changes to augment their sound for the better. Godlike is laden with grooves, but also incorporates a darker atmosphere while introducing some new tweaks to their formula. Appealing for the fanbase, but should help to expand the band’s reach too. A win-win combo for sure.

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