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Withered - Verloren

by Ian Yeara at 16 September 2021, 9:58 PM

WITHERED is a blackened Death Metal band from Atlanta Georgia, and when I say blackened Death Metal, that's pretty much it. What I mean is that these guys don't dip their toes into any other subgenres, what you see is what you get. Now despite the pretty awful cover art, the music sounds pretty good. Lots of Death Metal riffs with extra fuzz, but just the right amount where it doesn't distract from the enjoyment. This album is very atmospheric, with lots of noise going on in the background which works well enough (although I could have done without the excess noise blowing out my ears on Passing Through, but I'll just ignore that for now.

This is very serious material, there's no humour going on, just pure menace and despair in the vocals. I just really want to give these guys credit for nailing the aesthetic and sound of blackened Death Metal. Like this is the kind of album where if a friend asked me "what the hell is blackened Death Metal?" this is probably what I'd show them. Now despite all of my kind words, I do have some issues with this album, though I guess some of my complaints boil down to issues with the genre as a whole. This album offers nothing new or unique, true it's a wonderful example of the genre it's a part of and I really do like the overall sound of it. However, there's no boundary pushing, there's nothing different or exciting compared to dozens of similar albums I've heard this year, let alone in the last 10. Let me be very clear this is a me problem, and for most of you, if you like atmospheric, but still really heavy and dark blackened Death Metal then you should already be purchasing the album and ignoring the rest of what I have to say.

Maybe I just listen to too much Progressive Metal. From my end, a band in progression means the it is trying new things and evolving their sound. Bands like that are usually just looking to perfect their execution of the genre they know how to write and let me be clear there's nothing wrong with that, it's just not usually what I prefer. People claim metal is a very repetitive genre, and they're actually quite correct, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. A lot of bands find a certain niche, or sound that they like and of course their fanbase likes and they stick to that, with little tweaks and improvements here and there, but at the core the band remains the same.

This band set out to create a pure slab of blackened Death Metal, and they succeeded, I just personally feel like there's not enough individuality, or elements that make this album stick out from the rest of the genre. Like I said though, if this sounds like something you'll enjoy, just go get it, you won't regret it.

Songwriting: 8/10
Musicianship: 8/10
Memorability: 6/10
Production: 9/10

3 Star Rating

1. By Tooth in Tongue
2. The Predation
3. Dissolve
4. Casting in Wait
5. Passing Through
6. …The Long Hurt
7. Verloren
8. From Ashen Shores
Mike Thomson - Guitars, Vocals
Beau Brandon - Drums
Rafay Nabeel - Bass
Dan Caycedo - Guitars, Vocals
Record Label: Season Of Mist


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