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Verdelet – Against All Odds Award winner

Against All Odds
by "Der Bärtige Mann" Gareth Beams at 16 November 2019, 9:55 PM

VERDELET caused a storm in the UK metal underground with their live debuts in 2012, landing them shows across several countries in Europe with some of the most prolific artists in the industry. With their signature aggressive, haunting vocals, viscous, palm-muted riffing, relentless attacking-rhino-style drumming, rotten yet melodic harmonic progressions and exciting, original song structures full of surprises, full of attitude, theatre and impassioned live performances; VERDELET were proving to be one of the most intoxicating up and coming acts in the UK Metal underground at one point. This album however is a tribute to former Drummer Will Allatt aka Vadok, who sadly passed away earlier this year. Having spoken to bassist Hareth Khalfan, he said it is essentially a recording of the last time the band stepped into a room together. Hareth didn’t even know this recording existed until vocalist Darren Donnarumma aka Morior presented the rest of the band with mastered copies on the day of Vadok’s funeral. Naturally the band want to pay respects to their fallen brother in this album. This is Against All Odds! Rest in Peace Vadok!

Last Rays of the Sun” starts off the live album in a great dynamism. It has the old sounds of IMMORTAL clear from the off, which as one of the greatest Black Metal bands, they are an influence to most, but you can hear the thrash aspect from Hareth and Balan kicking into the song.  The thrash aspect adds depth and volume to song and makes you aware that it is the band’s own sound, not a tribute to anyone else’s. The break down midway is something you can hear more from the likes of DISSECTION, its brilliant. The break down splits the song and adds a new identity to it. It is a very smart production of sound.

A Thousand Lifetimes” keeps ticking over very nicely. The song has a completely different feel to the first song, its more melodic in its approach. I am tempted to say Melodic Black Metal. It blends the technical brilliance of early DISSECTION with a drop or two of GEHENNA for good measure. The deathly growls are added in very effectively too from Morior. The skills from Bala and Hareth are again so clear to hear, it is at the height of potential and it delivers. That being said, Vadok is drumming away like a mad man trying and successfully keeping up. The melody is balanced amazingly well.

Endless Deceit” has a start like DEEP PUPLE’sChild in Time” that song section being at the 3:19 mark. Listen to it and you’ll get me. Obviously this song is deeper, darker and heavier. The start progressing to the bridge nicely, it takes on a form of once more melodic sections of Black Metal. Morior has the Abbath style vocals once more with the deep growl still forming well into lyrics. Will on the drums is kicking some serious ass and is pulling it all together, a masterful display. Such a great song, without losing balance and clarity.

To the Ends of the Earth” kicks into gar from the off. The aggression from the vocals are heard from the off. The melody from instrumentalists is still there, running riot in the background. The pace has diminished slightly, but it has allowed the chords to drop and add another layer to create this sound. The sound is new to the recording and it adds a new depth top the album as a whole, it works well to guide you through. Don’t worry, you’ll still keep banging your heads and tapping your feet.

It’s a perfect farewell. The album is live in the studio, it’s as real as it gets. Its Raw Black Metal meets Melodic Black Metal and this is the bastardized offspring. The chemistry is clear to see and it’s a great way to give a sendoff. It is gutting to know we will never hear the studio form of this album

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

4 Star Rating

1. Last Rays of the Sun
2. A Thousand Lifetimes
3. Unfinished Business
4. Endless Deceit
5. Lost, Incapable of Triumph
6. To the Ends of the Earth
7. Nemesis Within
8. Wherein They Dwell
Darren Donnarumma aka Morior – Vocals & Guitar
Adnan Khalfan aka Balan – Guitars
Hareth Khalfan – Bass Guitar
Will Allatt aka Vadok (R.I.P) – Drums
Record Label: Ashes of Paltry Souls


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