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Distillator - Summoning The Malicious

Summoning The Malicious
by Garrett Davis at 04 June 2017, 2:02 PM

Amsterdam-based band DISTILLATOR debuted their first full-length album back in 2015. It was some old school skull-smashing Heavy Thrash Metal that drew from bands like SEPULTRA and SLAYER. Released May 2017 it was even voted as one of the best Thrash Metal albums of that year, and while this sophomore LP isn't all bad, it doesn't quite live up to the legacy of their first album.

Blinded by Chauvanism” wastes no time leaping into a savage Thrash track with screeching vocals and a breakneck pace. “Mechanized Existence” makes liberal use of the echoing vocals that reach up into a higher register - which appears to be constant objective for this entire album. I have to be honest, this has never been one of my favorite vocal choices; I just find it grating, like nails on a chalkboard, but like anything else, it's a style choice. “Estates of the Realm” really dips into the SLAYER end of the pool with a Groovey tinge that works pretty well. “Summoning the Malicious” has a staccato rhythm that reminds me of classic 80s horror film themes. Almost like the Jaws theme, the tension it manages to build with so few notes was actually pretty impressive and interesting.

The tempo slows just a bit with “Enter the Void”, wherein things get really repetitive to the point where I honestly could have sworn I had already heard the track and the playlist had somehow been switched to repeat. “Algorithmic Citizenship” really got my hopes up with the opening riffs but aside from tha, there just wasn't anything I hadn't already been listening to for twenty minutes. “Stature of Liberty” was a breath of fresh air, pummeling forward a little harder and felt more like the band was jamming out and exploring, something that I found much more engaging. The penultimate track is “The King of Kings” is quieter and more sombre…at first. It quickly folds back into becoming just another monotone track.

If I had to have a gripe about this album, it would be that all attempts to create a new or interesting direction are quickly abandoned and the music inevitably returns to the same chords. The solos are fairly flat and repetitive and don’t really explore any new territory. I don't even know whether it was deliberate but “Megalomania” is very similar to the opening track, which for any other album might seem deliberate but here it just feels like repetitive writing.

Summoning the Malicious” isn't a terrible album, but it just doesn't offer anything different from all the other Thrash records out there right now.

Songwriting: 5
Originality: 3
Memorability: 4
Production: 6

2 Star Rating

1. Blinded by Chauvinism
2. Mechanized Existence
3. Estates of the Realm
4. Summoning the Malicious
5. Enter the Void
6. Algorithmic Citizenship
7. Stature of Liberty
8. The King of Kings
9. Megalomania
Marco Prij – Drums
Desecrator – Guitars (Lead), Vocals (Lead)
Frankie Suim - Vocals (Backing), Bass
Record Label: Empire Records


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