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Dark and brutally...melodic! - 85%

CHRISTI_NS_ANITY8, April 11th, 2009

The year 2002 saw the return of Centinex with a new full-length effort, Diabolical Desolation. With the previous Hellbrigade, our Swedish butchers returned to a more solid and natural death metal approach, forgetting a bit the black metal touches of the past albums. This new album can be considered as a natural continuation of the previous album because the death metal continues to be the strongest point here and also the production now exalts the classical death metal style of the band. The guitars have the classic Swedish touch but the sounds are not so clear and all the instruments seem melted down together; however, let’s analyze this album in a better way.

“Demonic Warlust” can be easily considered one of the best tracks here because the level of inspiration is excellent and the tempo is immediately fast. After awhile, we remain surprised for the more melodic sections we can find: the keyboards create a base under the less impulsive guitars and this has its climax on the solo. The rest is definitely faster and the vocals are in constant balance between the screams and the classic growl that, however, is never excessively screamed. “Forthcoming Terror” is straightforward death metal with fast palm muting parts and sudden blast beats. The atmosphere is pitch black and “Spawned to Destroy” adds more violence with heavy riffs and impulsive paces. However, going on we can notice in a clearly way that At The Gates band threw big shadows over this album. We can notice it from riffs and the structures: Centinex are not playing the old form of Swedish death metal, but a sort of a more modern one.

However, don’t be frightened because the violence remains untouched and the heaviness that lies on the mid-paced breaks is huge. On the other hand, we must also mark a few melodic influences that concern especially the solos. Sometimes they remind me Darkane style too on the great debut Rusted Angel because the modern touch is quite evident even in a song like “Soul Crusher” that has its power on the sheer frontal assault. The refrain is good and the guitars always hide a hint of melody on some parts as the first clean vocals come out too. The title track displays a melodic guitar intro to produce a gloom atmosphere in a crescendo of intensity on mid-paced moments. Here the melodic lead lines are far more present and we can notice it on the following “On Violent Soil” too. The tempo is faster, with more blast beats but the guitars riffs are always a bit melodic and the keyboards enter again to increase a sort of spectral atmosphere.

The Massive Killing Capacity influences reign supreme over “Total Misanthropia” song for the tremolo on the guitars and the up tempo. “The Bloodline” sounds more “classic death metal” for the use of some ultra low pitched vocals and the ultra heavy riffs. The speed is important here but the mid-paced break by the middle is something nasty and catchy at the same time. After all this brutality, the melodic lead notes of “A War Symphony” are more than welcome, even if the structure soon returns to death metal but it’s a death metal that never forgets the melodic hint. The final “Hellfire Twilight” is again incredibly influenced by the mid-era Dismember and the groove is also more present to give the right heaviness to these good riffs.

Well, all things considered, I must admit that here we have another good release by this overlooked band. One thing is sure and it’s that Centinex don’t like to be stuck in a fixed genre for more than one album and that’s good also because they can do it so well! Well, at least they remained always nasty and fast!