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Mongrel's Cross - Psalter of the Royal Dragon Court

Mongrel's Cross
Psalter of the Royal Dragon Court
by Gareth Beams at 02 August 2018, 11:11 PM

The Blackened Thrash Metal Brisbanites bring out their second full-length album: “Psalter of the Royal Dragon Court”, due to be released via Hells Headbangers Records. The great sounds from 2012’s debut album, “The Sins of Aquarius”, had left some fans wondering if we’d ever get to hear the band again; after a 6-year silence they unleash “Psalter of the Royal Dragon Court”. If you’re new to the band and you’re also a fan of their countrymen in DESTRÖYER 666, then this is something you’re gonna enjoy. Hopefully by the 3rd of August it’ll have a stream on Bandcamp.

King of the Beasts” kicks us off with a beautifully balanced solo intro before Grand Mongrel releases his vocal prowess upon the album. The beat is solid and steady, not as thrash paced as some would like from a start, but along the song it does pick up with a progressing beat from Necros on the drums. The vocals are easier to hear what is being said than many of their peers would have, this for me adds as a bonus. The tempo certainly picks up and soon sounds more like a typical Blackened Thrash song from the likes of ABSU. The melody from the guitars is beautiful, it holds the song together very well. The band members clearly know not only their own strengths, but each other’s too. This is a prenominal way to start the album off.

Neurian Transformation” continues the same form in pace as where “King of the Beasts” left off, which is never a band thing. The start has clear vocals once more, which again is easy to understand. The beat is constant again, allowing your foot to keep tapping whilst the song plays. A few lighter thrash-esqe solos are thrown in around the 4-minute mark to add a further depth and dimension to the song and the album itself. The guitar is more complex in this song than before, but shows a great level experience in it. Its more OVERKILL levels than ABSU on this, with a few similarities to DESTRÖYER 666 more noticeable.

The Thirteenth Card” has the continuing theme of pace that has so far ignited the album. The pace slows down a bit once the vocals kick in; a bit more sludge-infused. The overall symphony flows through very well, the balance is arguably most perfected in this song than we have heard so far. A further atmospheric vibe is more fluent in a song that seems to offer more attention to the immense instrumentals throughout. This a masterful artistic display from the band, it has a new side to show how a band can progress their sound to several levels.

Khara” starts out as a frenzied solo that any thrash artist would be happy with. The vocals have again not sped up too much, but match the pace of the instrumental tempo perfectly.  Like its predassessor it has a hgh emphasis on guitar play, the solos are there but don’t last as long, but the melody is still fluent and works a treat. There is a more progressive beat to hear as the guitar melody is steady without losing its balance.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. King of the Beasts
2. Neurian Transformation
3. The Thirteenth Card
4. Khara
5. From Transylvania to Tunbridge Wells
6. Derkesthai - Initiation (To See Clearly)
7. Trail of the Serpent
8. Vessel of Shar On
Lineup:
Goet Euryn - Bass, Guitars
Necros Craigos - Drums
Grand Mongrel - Guitars, Vocals
Record Label: Hells Headbangers Records
     


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