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Summoning The Lich – United In Chaos Award winner

Summoning The Lich
United In Chaos
by Thomas Kumke at 28 March 2021, 4:43 PM

SUMMONING THE LICH were founded in 2017 and they are from St. Louis, Missouri. They play a mix of Death Metal and Deathcore. So far, they released one demo in 2017. “United In Chaos” is their first full-length album and it was produced and mixed at Sicktones Studio, Missouri. The album was released via California label Prosthetic Records which has a track record of Death Metal, Black Metal, and Metalcore bands. It has a length of more than 45 minutes.

United In Chaos” is an excellent mix of different elements of Death Metal and Deathcore. It has a lot of technical and melodic aspects, but also the speed and evilness of brutal Death Metal. The album starts with “The Nightmare Begins” which sets the tone for the upcoming 45 minutes: starting with a never ending ear-deafening scream, it includes powerful guitar riffs, crunching bass, brutal growling vocals that range from high pitched screams to growls at the low range of the gutturals, as well as blast-beat and double-bass drum sections. The lead guitar sequences are not overly technical here, just as much as needed for the song. There are tempo changes throughout ranging from highly paced sections to mid-tempo parts.

The song structures allow for a wide range of different tempos on the album as evident in “Cult Of The Ophidian” which starts slow with dark and gloomy riffing transitioning into hammering sections played blisteringly fast. The lead guitar sections are excellent throughout, maintaining the doomy nature of the song. The technicality of the guitars and bass are at a very high level on this track which includes a harmonic lead guitar solo. The sound of the album occasionally reminds a bit on THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER and this is not really a bad thing.

The Gatekeeper” is one of my favorite track on the album because of the darkness in sound. The powerful and dark guitar riffing as well as the atmospheric layering is really one of the highlights on “United In Chaos”. The guitar riffs are catchy throughout and the rhythm is, for large parts, ideal for head-banging. There are tempo changes throughout and TJ Chilton on the drums is doing an amazing job here. “Demon Of The Snow” is another of those songs with hammering drums at high speed. Highlights are the lead guitar sequences including the harmonic lead guitar solo as well as the ever changing between frenzy shrieks and deep growls of David Bruno. The title song is probably the darkest and most demonic songs on the album. A slow and gloomy start transitions into a burst of blast-beats accompanied by dark guitar riffing. The doom-laden nature of the song is preserved especially during the melancholic lead guitar sequences around the middle part of the track.

SUMMONING THE LICH mix the tempo on the album very smartly between the songs as well as within the songs. “Descend” and “Death Crystal” are among those songs that frequently vary tempo ranging from mid-tempo to outbursts of insane speed. Especially “Descend” is surely one of the more brutal songs on the album and it was also released as video with the YouTube link given below.

United In Chaos” is an excellent debut album. It has everything that makes you want to listen to Death Metal: brutality, darkness, technicality, epic melodic parts and outstanding vocals. More importantly, SUMMONING THE LICH create a diverse and mature sound with its own character which is evidence of good songwriting. The band has extremely talented musicians and understand to form a well-functioning band with vocalist David Bruno probably catching the ears due to his outstanding vocal skills. “United In Chaos” is very well produced. SUMMONING THE LICH set the bar very high and “United In Chaos” might become a contender for the Death Metal album of the year, but for sure it belongs into the collection of every Death Metal fan.

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

4 Star Rating

1. The Nightmare Begins
2. Cult Of The Ophidian
3. The Gatekeeper
4. Demon Of The Snow
5. Predatory Reflection
6. Acid Reign
7. United In Chaos
8. Descend
9. Hyms (Of The Witches Of The West)
10. Death Crystal
11. Temple Of The Bone
12. The Lure Of The Necromancer
David Bruno – Vocals
Ryan Phelps – Guitars
TJ Chilton – Drums
John Flynn – Bass
Record Label: Prosthetic Records


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