Review: “Alone In Death” by Crown Magnetar

“While as a band we’ve always been about incredibly fast, incredibly jarring deathcore with a lot of death metal influence, Alone In Death was written with speed and captivation in mind the whole time, on top of our go-to writing styles. At the same time, we’ve added an emphasis on emotional depth, making sure the riffs and beats were as memorable as they were extreme. Everyone goes through varying degrees of hardship, pain and isolation. Alone in Death reflects that both lyrically and emotionally.” ~ Crown Magnetar

Emerging from the wreckage of Colorado in 2017, American Deathcore heavy hitters Crown Magnetar rose to prominence with their 2018 debut EP “The Prophet of Disgust” which provided the discerning listener with assaults of blistering technical riffs, restless and relentless blast beats and caustic vocals. Building on that foundation of skulls they followed up with the critically acclaimed debut full length entitled “The Codex Of Flesh” in 2021 which was so well received that it opened the door for them to support genre pioneers Lorna Shore on a US tour. Not ones to rest on their laurels while wearing the crown of thorns, Nick Burnett (Guitar), Dan Tucker (Vocals), Byron London (Drums) and Grant Robinson (Bass) have returned to strike while the iron is hot with “Alone In Death“.

Going stratospheric at a lightening pace with their hybrid blend of Technical Death Metal and Deathcore, Crown Magnetar are a powerhouse quartet that strike with venomous intent from the very start of this six track, 19 minute, statement of brutal intent. Genre prize fighters, they go straight for the jugular from the very start with vocalist Dan Tucker delivering some truly throat splitting, skull shattering and downright larynx threatening uncleans, inhale-gutturals, bowl clenching lows, pig squeals and screams. But here’s the thing. His lyrics are surprisingly comprehendible despite that madness. Sonically the band have been captures at their most destructive, the drum sound being absolutely monstrous, crisp clean and frontloaded with the kind of jackhammer footwork and rapid fire blasts that should see London listed among his peers like Dave Lombardo, Kevin Talley and Gene Hoglan for an award as he drives things forward with machine like surgical precision and technical excellence. Accompanying that combination of cluster bomb blasts and heavy artillery, the riffs from Burnett are equally as expertly delivered as he frequently gets through the work of a pair of guitarist while decimating the weak and leaving the opposition for dust. Tempo shifting from high octane incendiary Technical Death Metal to brutal downtempo Deathcore with slick transitions is something of a speciality and in “Graverot” they achieve critical mass with consummate ease. Burnett brings the fuel to the already raging fire with brutal dissonant breakdowns, juicy arpeggios and the occasional intricate melodic lead that defies all the odds while at the same time refining in the scorching heat the very genre itself. The perfect storm of mesmerising musicianship and blunt force aggression shrouded in darkness with “Alone In Death” Crown Magnetar have laid down the gauntlet at the same time as making our ears bleed in the best possible way and not only delivered a worthy follow up to a critically acclaimed album, but proven that they have a lot more to give [8/10]

Track listing

1. Alone In Death
2. Hellsphere
3. Realistic Flesh Mask (ft. Nick Arthur ex-Molotov Solution)
4. The Pain of Existence
5. Graverot
6. God Is My Enemy

Alone In Death” by Crown Magnetar is out 25th March via Unique Leader Records

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