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Dethrone – State of Decay Award winner

State of Decay
by Max Elias at 26 November 2020, 6:00 PM

Swedish DEATH/THRASH METAL act DETHRONE have a short but sweet—and very aggressive—EP out, called “State of Decay”. From the first track, the quality of the music is obvious. Pounding drums, razor wire riffing, and a vocalist who sounds as if he is commanding the armies of Hell define this latest effort by the band. “Divine Supremacy” oscillates between big, crushing walls of chords and percussion and buoyant, nimble pedal-tone riffs. The riffs change from moment to moment as well; like the band knew their EP was like 12 minutes long and packed as much as possible into the material as a result. But nothing feels forced, even the short solo towards the end of the song.

Similar riffing opens “Revolt”, which brings a marching, urgent feel to the music. The guitars are always prominent in the mix no matter what else is going on, and lend the song its color, as with the tremolo picking running under the vocals at the two minute mark. One can see how the style of DETHRONE is inspired by bands like DECADENCE or even German thrash titans EXUMER (particularly “The Raging Tides” album), but to dismiss them as an imitation or worship act would be a mistake.

This EP is so saturated with riffs and compelling parts that go by so quickly that it is absurd to listen to it only once and expect to pick up everything going on. At the very least it demands multiple listens because the songs are so tightly constructed and just technical enough to be compelling. For example, “Flesh Harvest” is the shortest song here, but between its thunderous drum intro and arsenal of fast-moving galloping, biting riffs, has enough meat to stretch for twice its running time.

The album closes with the explosive “Room 101”, which is devastatingly brutal and melodic all at once. The IN FLAMES style riffs (they are Swedish after all) running beneath and through everything else elevate “Room 101” past simple aggression. In fact the section shortly after the two minute mark of the song is one of the more memorable on the entire EP; a classic MELODEATH octave chug that shows the band has more than one wheelhouse musically. I enthusiastically recommend anyone who likes hard-hitting, well-developed and demanding metal to check this EP out, and also to familiarize themselves with DETHRONE’s earlier material.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Musicianship: 9
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

  1. Divine Supremacy
  2. Revolt
  3. Flesh Harvest
  4. Room 101
Kenni Öjebrandt – Bass
Simon Lundh – Drums
David Hartikainen – Guitars
Jonas Carlsson – Guitars
Mattias Vestlund – Vocals
Record Label: Massacre Records


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