Christ Beheaded - "Open the Gates Of Hell" CD EP (US)
Black metal band from Indianapolis, Indiana featuring members from Demiricous and Summon the Destroyer. The sound is pretty much inspired by (early) Marduk, Dark Funeral and Unlord, with a recognizable foundation of German old school thrash metal in the riffing as well as the pumping rhythm section. The eerie sparse melodies are in the vein of Setherial's "Lords Of the Nightrealm". The lone lead/solo in the title cut forms a highlight and welcome addition to this otherwise blistering traditional Nordic assault. 'Decomposed' and 'Sanguine Moon' are slow building tracks with a few crushing midtempo sections in between the more typical raging segments, reminding of the genre's earlier days. 'The Cleansing Ritual' starts off with the same "Exorcist III : Legion" sample as Cryptopsy's classic "None So Vile" album, a weak choice on the end of Christ Beheaded. Compared to a lot of other black metal combos Christ Beheaded effectively use their death metal heaviness and German thrash metal undertones to their utmost effect. The album was recorded at Basement Rage Studio in Beechwood, Indiana with The Gates Of Slumber drummer Bob Fouts at the helm, resulting in a high end but murky enough production. The artwork, design and lay-out are good, but not especially spectacular. The medieval painting and readable logo are a definite plus. Once this band gets their image right, their overall presentation will benefit from it. Overall, a very promising start for this up-and-coming US black metal group.
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