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Maladie – Wound Of Gods

Wound Of Gods
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 19 November 2022, 12:12 AM

From Bandcamp, “In a world in which plagues and sicknesses are well-spread upon its population, it is time for a disease to reach out for new victims…Can a god even exist in this day and age? And even more important: Can a god be wounded? On their sixth album, MALADIE is causing the “Wound Of Gods”, which makes the band prove that their very own Plague Metal is still an ever-evolving style.” The album has nine songs.

“Eternity Denied” is the first. The opening tones are slow and low, with a heavy bass sound and bottom end, but the vocals are just a bit playful and somewhat catchy. It has a Gothic Metal tinge to it, even with the addition of harsh vocals. Is the sax making a strong revival in the genre? “Dying Immortality” is a more succinct offering, with a hastier pace. The vocals are sung with both clean and harsh tones, and more saxophone notes grace us. I question the when and where of them, however. The title track has a smooth riff with more sax notes combined with harsh vocals and more aggression. The juxtaposition of these two sounds is stark, and I’m not sure there are proper transitions.

“A Fool’s Joy” is another odd song with creamy clean vocals at first, followed by a heavy and aggressive passage with harsh vocals. This is a strange sound, but I am enjoying it. I really like to harmonized vocals at the end. “Dreams Die” perhaps sums up the strange combination of the two styles best. I like them both by themselves but am still having a bit of a tough time when they are combined. But again, the end of the song works very well for me. If nothing else, they are keeping the listener engaged. “Of Hanged Mankind” opens with a slow, sludgy riff and total desolation. The sax notes begin to slowly succumb to the descending sound, but it picks up. Out of nowhere comes these clean, harmonized vocals that fill the air with melody and hope. But chaos rears its head, like Satan photobombing your family pic at the beach.

“So Close” is the long song on the album. A surprising sound of blue skies and bright sunny rays open the song, but the decent into madness is coming. The combination works a little better here, or am I just getting more used to it? The ending sequence is very aggressive with machine gun drumming and vocal screams, but the melody is still there, somewhat hidden. “Defiled Yet Bright” closes the album. Again, the combination of clean sounds and harsh sounds is stark. Melody with fire…breezes with gusts…black with white…whatever analogy you use works.

OK…this was definitely one of the most unique albums I have heard in a while. The band is clearly talented, let’s get that out of the way first. The best way I can describe the sound is that these guys are clean rockers at heart with overcoats of filth and disgust. There are many different layers on the album…some accessible while others are not quite so. If nothing else, the album keeps you engaged the entire way through, but I am still trying to figure out if I like it or not.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Eternity Denied
2. Dying Immortality
3. Wound of Gods
4. A Fool's Joy
5. Dreams Die
6. Of Hanged Mankind
7. So Close
8. Invisible Retaliation
9. Defiled Yet Bright
Hauke Peters – Saxophone
Mark Walther – Guitars
Björn Köppler – Guitars, Percussion, Keyboards, Piano, Cello, Organ, Bass, Drums, Flute
Déhà – Keyboards, Piano, Cello, Vocals
Alexander Wenz – Vocals
Kevin Olasz – Guitars
Record Label: Apostasy Records


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Edited 03 December 2022

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