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Shrapnel Storm – Shrapnel Storm

Shrapnel Storm
Shrapnel Storm
by Quinten Serna at 14 October 2020, 6:08 PM

Death Metal carries and leaves behind a particular taste, a sullen grace left to putrefy, rot, and ferment within our memories as the sound leaves our ear canals and, as we eventually come to discover, in its wake we find an absence and a longing for more of its caustic corrosive melodies and sickening progressions. SHRAPNEL STORM has just managed their sophomore album, the eponymous “Shrapnel Storm” which just might be the paragon of the band’s work.

The album begins with the track “The Burning” which manages to serve as an example for what the album contains, a true prelude by example—the song features a near-constant groove with alternating progressions which manage to clearly define the differential sections of the track despite the drums’ unwavering onslaught. Next is “Riding Against Dawn” which personifies death as an ever encroaching inevitability the analogue reminds me of “Hatredcopter” by DETHKLOK. “Triumph Over Winter” begins with lo-fi compressed guitars, drums, and bass which serve as noise before the actual rhythm can commence which is itself an interesting lead-in that few bands have ever used—the song itself features varying rhythms and dynamics wherein it utilizes each of these to tell its story. “Visions of Violent Past” starts up with a combination of noise and chord progressions, the latter of which are eventually matched by drums. Lastly is the song, “Forsake Pride,” a 7 minute opus with unwavering resolve—the drums are a bit more free with their groove work in this track, and just as an outro the song fades out into complete silence.

The instruments and blending of each is quite unique for Death Metal as it’s quite evident how much of a focus there was on how discrete and exacting each recording is. The guitars are visceral, sharp, and powerful ushering forth a semblance of energy and force; the bass is somewhat difficult to locate in the soundscape given how full the guitars are yet PETE’s performance is utterly insane as the foundation is nearly relentless and driven matching the guitar with ease; the drums are forward and quite contained in their own space never bleeding into another niche though unfortunately the kick has an artificial sound to it which detracts from the rest of the kick in great strides; and the vocals are set perfect for every track, evenly balanced with the dynamics.

Shrapnel Storm” is a great many things powerful and memorable leaving the listener longing for more, the collection of tracks showcases the band’s abilities in composition and performance as every song is self-contained and unique, such that the idea of sameness is a rarity ill fitted to describing the album. For anyone looking for a bitter, energetic, and brutally honest expression this album has that more than covered, and will more than likely turn you into a long time fan of the band.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. The Burning
2. Riding Against Dawn
3 First Blood
4. Battle Wraith
5. Triumph In Winter
6. Heart Of Winter
7. Visions Of Violent Past
8. Coup De Grâce
9. Forsaken Pride
Pete – Bass
Kurre – Drums
Aki – Guitars and Vocals
Tri Mäkitalo – Guitars
Ykä – Vocals
Record Label: Great Dane Records


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