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Devastation - Idolatry (Reissue)

Idolatry (Reissue)
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 19 October 2017, 9:45 PM

In two years plenty of changes can be made, hell even in several months. The Texan DEVASTATION, unknowingly, were very close to pull their shortest straw out of the stack. At least they were able to experience the formation of the Death Metal storm in the US, while even supporting the pioneers DEATH in the process. Back in the day, the band was signed to Combat Records, as it was since their debut album “Violent Termination”. However, due to running out support from their label, and even with their momentum being on the rise in their local scene, it was decided to call it quits. Frankly, I asked myself several questions about that decision, questioning the motives, especially since a label was slowly dissolving. Nonetheless, what was done, and you know the rest. At least we have the relics at our disposal.

Back to the album. Evidently, the foundation of this final, and third, release, “Idolatry” showed a much deeper focus on the raging extremity that was on the role, chewing intensely into Metal music. Both sound and musical approach appeared to have abandoned the Punk influence that orchestrated most of the previous efforts on the “Signs Of Life” album, turning their gaze into the Metal side of the street, viciously mixing Thrash and Death Metal under the same banner. The riffages became mightier, ferocious in a sense, relatively divergent, featuring several solid licks to raise the energy bars. On the other hand, the lead guitar work was slightly deemed this time around, the band basing itself on rhythms, which was a bit of a drag, especially after the sonic demonstration of force on the previous album. In general, I felt that technical wise, DEVASTATION showed signs that they were ready to cross the borders into Death Metal.

Also being part of the riff composition, I perceived “Idolatry” as less tedious and routine than its previous contender. Not that the band dared that much, yet their change of scenery, going forward into being more extreme along with preserving a find Thrash edge, had its effect to make the album as fairly better result. “Forsaken Hatred” obliterated the senses with one of the album’s best soloing capacity, delivering destructive riffing mania, a tremendous effort of pure toughness and dismay, one of my likeables off this release, simply nothing is held back. “Subconscious” is a psychotic tune, conveying great quality Thrash export riffer with iconic Death Metal orientation. It could have been a hidden tune of DEATH, driving force of chaos. The self-titled “Idolatry” is a different kind of goat, presenting a line that is somewhat closer to the Bay Area Thrash, more of the SLAYERish style, gone towards the extreme frenziness, a strong vibe of heaviness that got really well with soaring anguished vocals. I can also recommend on “Freewill”, probably the only Punk infused jackal, “Never Believe” and the brutal feature “Souls of Sacrifice”.

As bonus within this remastered reissue, several live performances of the band were inserted, between 1988-1991. Due to mainly recording quality reasons, I believe those could have been better off. Not always it was easy to comprehend what went on through each song, and obviously, it ruined the experience of catching the band live, even on CD.

It is too bad that right when DEVASTATION took on a rather mature direction, everything collapsed. “Idolatry” proved that the band was on a right track and it is a shame that the potential didn’t last.

Purchase Link: Punishment 18 Records

3 Star Rating

1. Deliver the Suffering
2. Freewill
3. Forsaken Hatred
4. Souls of Sacrifice
5. Idolatry
6. Legacy of Faith
7. Subconscious
8. Never Believe
9. Desolation / Souls Of Sacrifice (Live)
10. Meet Your Maker (Live)
11. Idolatry (Live)
12. Subconscious (Live)
Rodney Dunsmore – Vocals
Henry Elizondo – Guitars
Dave Burk - Guitars
Edward Vasquez – Bass
David Lozano – Drums
Record Label: Punishment 18 Records


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