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Headlessness confirmed, brains intact - 93%

autothrall, February 18th, 2014

Winds of Creation is not the sort of album one experiences every day, and at the dawn of the 21st century, that was exponentially the case. I had grown quite jaded on a lot of brutal/technical death metal and was finding my thrills elsewhere, but records like this and Cannibal Corpse's underrated masterpiece Bloodthirst rechristened my attention span for the style. Decapitated's Earache/Wicked World debut is hands down one of the better efforts the Polish scene has produced, proudly standing alongside Calm Machinery, Lost Soul and about half of the estimable Vader backlog, while taking only minimal cues from their countrymen or really any regional death metal sound the world over. In fact, Winds of Creation was so anomalous that even the band's own future output, as hard as they might try, could not really compare to it riff-for-riff, so I've obviously revealed my hand here... This is The One. This is my favorite Decapitated material and very unlikely to be dethroned if they keep producing duds like Carnival is Forever in the immediate future...not that they haven't put out other good albums in the interim, but whenever I journey back 14 years to experience how refreshingly intense they were upon their debut to the world, I become fairly frustrated at such an inconsistent legacy.

Let's clear the obvious: I don't know of too many death metal bands who were performing at such a level of proficiency at so early an age...most of them still teens during this era, and playing progressions of notes with both a precision and agility that would make Trey Azagthoth blush. I chose that man intentionally, because I feel that somewhere along the line, it was his intense velocity picking on records like Altars of Madness, Covenant and Domination which might have inspired Vogg's playing. Other than that, there's not much of a comparison I might make elsewhere in death metal...Decapitated were brutal and incorporated a lot of the dense chugging components one might expect, but they were always interesting and served primarily as bridges between the classically-inspired progressions that put the band on the map. The riffs included some inherent groove to them, but were also incredibly detailed and complex...which would mean nothing if they weren't so goddamned catchy. Even if I listen to renowned records like None So Vile or Pierced from Within, the intricacy and forethought of these particular tunes reveals an entire other level of calculation and execution. Mysticism and technique translated into pure concussion, and hopefully (but not ultimately) the precursors to many such exhibitions to come. Part of Decapitated's appeal was pure spectacle, but these were not songs lacking in substance...in fact, they patented a form of gluey guitar porn here which has been gangbanging my gray matter ever since.

Fuck, just the riffing of "Blessed" alone is more inventive and impressive than the sum of ideas found on most brutal death metal records, and though I won't call the music 'accessible' to a broad audience, it's surprisingly easy to follow regardless of the acrobatics. A fusion of old school tremolo picked death metal aesthetics via the Floridian forerunners with something more eloquent, accurate and explosive. Eager and technical enough to assert itself into a younger generation of listeners raised on soulless, brutal death metal where technique, mosh culture and soulless brutality took center stage above songwriting, but also itself a flavorful and solid example of the latter, substantial enough for death vets like myself to spin it endlessly (at least so far). This is not a PERFECT album, it didn't entirely rewrite the playbook for me like those first two Pestilence discs, or Left Hand Path, or Realm of Chaos, but it was certainly unexpected that such a young band could come forth and help reinvigorate my interest in the largely stagnant cesspool of soundalikes that the medium had long been steered towards. And it doesn't just end with the rhythm guitars, because the leads are frilly and exciting, the drumming of the late Vitek far better balanced and grooved out than on the band's previous demos, and even the bass-playing here dextrous and mandatory to anchor down the mile a minute guitar picking centered on endlessly genius 'fills' of note choices.

Sauron's probably the least advanced figure in this equation, but his blunt guttural presentation proves a welcome contrast against the brighter, thinner guitar picking. Like a neanderthal being tapped to present the latest NASA technology, he's got an expressive low-end roar somewhere between a Karl Willetts and Frank Mullen, and throws a lot of decayed sustain that stands out against the clinical production of those goddamned guitars. Though Winds of Creation is largely culled from the Eye of Horus demo (1998), it sounds deeper, darker, more serious and sinister, otherworldly beings channeled into the limbs and lips of a quartet of young Polish gentlemen. It's also quite compact: just about 30 minutes of concise, incredible content before the "Dance Macabre" ambient outro leads into an excellent cover of Slayer's "Mandatory Suicide" which maintains the original's sense of heinous despair, while making it their own. Granted, I felt like, as with most album-closer cover songs, that it did detract a little from the supernova of excitement and originality that they were creating with their own content, but if you're going to include one, even such a safe choice, then it must be at least this good.

Otherwise, the only complaint I might have is the shitty imagery on the cover art, which looks fiery and acceptable at a distance but really just seems like the cluttered, computer-generated garbage you'd find on a lot of records in the latter half of the 90s (Monstrosity was also guilty of this on their sophomore). But it seems a moot complaint when the music is just this impressive. Winds of Creation might not be perfect, and I might not short-list it among the 10-20 death metal records I'd bring with me to a desert island, but it is the only valid justification for the band's considerable career hype, and an album they have yet to match. I do appreciate other Decapitated discs for other reasons, and the aesthetics of this one certainly fuel the followup Nihility to some extent, but the amount of effort Vogg packs into individual tracks seems to have devolved, to have dumbed itself down on subsequent recordings. I can only imagine what travel in the opposite direction might have offered us, but at least this debut still stands as a standard-setting monolith for what a musician can pull off, even at such an impressively young age. Am I jealous much? Well, I definitely was the first 50 times I popped this in my CD player. How could I not be? Tremendous stuff.

-autothrall
http://www.fromthedustreturned.com

The First Damned - 86%

televiper11, November 14th, 2012

I've been availing myself lately of recordings released during the brief wilderness of my own personal exile from death metal. From late 1999 through to about early 2005, I basically stopped listening to any new death metal, my attention absorbed in other genres and interests. Thus, there are gaps in my knowledge: acclaimed albums that arose out of the dust of death metal's mid-90's collapse to reinvigorate the genre in my absence. Decapitated is a band whose name I've known but whose albums I never checked out despite their rep being well established upon my return. Part of this was personal bias: I have never cared for Vader and summarily dismissed Decapitated as Vader clones without giving them the benefit of a fair hearing. I am glad I have rectified my prejudice because Winds Of Creation is fuckin' awesome and I've gained something valuable from finally hearing it.

To start, I had no idea how young these guys were when this was recorded and didn't find out until after I'd given it a few spins. You'd think a band with this level of musical perspicacity, rhythmic density, and overall achievement would be a seasoned bunch approaching peak -- not a bunch of minors channeling their youth through a funnel of aggression that belies their ages and gives many well-matured bands of the era an intense run for their money. And second, they sound nothing like Vader: they're heavier, tighter, deeper, darker, and way more technical. Lastly, in an era I felt was bereft of excellent death metal, Winds Of Creation reminds me that there's always quality death metal out there, even if I wasn't finding it at the time.

Here is a record filled with pluck, daring, and youthful exuberance tipping over into abundance. Everything about this record shreds: Vogg's guitar work has a serrated knife feel, cleaving chunks of gristle to get straight at the bone marrow; the drums are airtight and quick-of-feet. Vitek plays the fuck out of his drums -- he's snappy, precise, and variable, keeping a loose feel while still hitting his mark. Only a teenager, he gives a veritable clinic and sounds closer to what a more mechanized Dave Lombardo would sound like backing death metal (that Slayer cover is no accident). Vocally, Sauron goes deep monotone, reminding me of Disincarnate's Bryan Cegon: clinical and efficient but perhaps not the most dramatic or sustained. He's not a weak link by any means, though I wonder what a more dynamic presence would bring. Sadly, the bass remains an achilles heel being low in a mix that is otherwise bright and powerful -- one of the better modern productions I have heard.

The songwriting is where Decapitated's youth presents a slight disadvantage. Not that the songs are bad at all. In fact, they are mostly quite good indeed with a fiery energy and palpable tension that smoothly masters the delicate balance between speed, heaviness, and technicality. Accessibility, on the other hand, is an issue. In their youthful enthusiasm, the band seems to throw a few too many ideas (and riffs) at the wall. Some songs whir by in a blur of high-octane acceleration that leaves my ears fatigued. When they nail the formula, as they do on the title track and the masterful "Eye Of Horus," it's an exhilarating listen. Sadly, Decapitated didn't seem to grow in their maturity. Subsequent albums lack this record's passion and variety while personal tragedy (RIP Vitek) has altered the band permanently leaving Winds Of Creation as a landmark debut whose potential remains sadly unfulfilled.

One of the best death Metal albums I've ever heard - 95%

Bruce500, February 27th, 2012

This album is amazing. If anyone ever tells you otherwise, they obviously don't like this style of music. My only complaint is that the vocalist does not change his style at all, but other than that, this is one of the best albums I've ever heard. After getting this album, you can expect lots of tremolo picking, palm-muted riffs, blast beats, death growls, double bass, and solos. Musically, it's just a standard death metal album, but there's something about this that makes it stand out from the crowd.

From the opening track to the Mandatory Suicide cover, this album is full of energy, speed, guttural vocals, and awesomely deep guitar tones. That's one of my favorite things about it- the guitars sound brilliant, both musically and from the tone. The bass seems to be normal, complementing the guitars, but aren't really anything extraordinary. The drums are absolutely awesome. I'm not a drummer, but I can tell that Vitek knew what he was doing when he recorded this.

Another amazing contributor to my love of this album is the pure aggression of the entire band. Decapitated's later works generally seemed somewhat slower, as if they ran out of energy after this album. The album sounds like the entire band was mad at someone and had just taken a ton of energy shots. Once you listen to this, you will never be able to enjoy any of their other albums to their full extent.

Another aspect to consider when hearing this album is that all of the members where under 18. The drummer was only 15 years old when this album was recorded! If that's not amazing, I don't know what is. This album stands out from the crowd of albums created by adults, yet it's created by teens. It's really cool also to think that those guttural vocals are coming from a 17 year old. It's just pure excellence.

This album is amazing in almost all aspects. If you don't already have it, go get it!

Riffed and Torn - 90%

Ogremace, August 23rd, 2009

Right from the start of the title track, you know what this album is going to be: guitar, bass and drums blast off and the first riff of the album takes shape, pounding, intricate and masterfully crafted. As on the rest of the album, no time is wasted in getting to the meat of the offerings found here. Within thirty seconds you’ve got a driving death metal riff, furious blast beats and rolling double bass; at the 1 minute mark the mix is complete as the vocals come gurgling through the speakers. Sauron named himself aptly – his guttural bellows sound like the voice of an orc spewing Hellish vomit. The song races on with more riffs than you can count, each fast, elaborate and head banging in the best way. Every song on the album is like this: chock full of riffs. By the time “Blessed” rolls around you feel like you’ve already heard 3 songs and by the time it’s over you’ll wonder how the next 7 songs can keep it up; for better or worse, they do.

While I wouldn’t call the album simple, the concept certainly is, and just as any other album that’s reliant on the riffing, what’s a blessing can also be a curse. On the large scale, there’s little variation to be found here; what makes it work is the range of the repertoire at the axemen’s disposal and their willingness to plumb its depths. The riffs range from fast paced brutal death metal style chugs to more deliberate, thrashy ones such as in “The First Damned,” more technical, unconventional lines as can be found in “Winds of Creation” or “The Eye of Horus” all the way to crunchier, “old school” grooves such as in “Nine Steps”. Every song has at least 5 great riffs you’ll find yourself humming and head banging to later in the day and yet manages to avoid the vice of so many tech-death bands by keeping the songs more memorable and distinct. The best riffs are repeated - never to the point of tedium but just enough to give the song an identity, so that you can think of it later and thrash it out in your head. Aside form this, the songs display a variety of structures. Blessed will leave you reeling with it’s relentless speed and proliferation of transitional and filler riffs and ending lick is one of the fastest and most frenetic on the album. “The First Damned” starts off with a slower but more powerful riff that gives way to a variation on the same theme that underpins the whole rest of the song. It’s a great example of building a whole song around just one idea. “Winds of Creation” has at least 2 bridges and a whole bunch of sidesteps into wonderful little runs and many of the songs feature extended intros and cycling paths to and from the main riff. The songwriting here isn’t overly complex, but neither is the material, and so the two work together as well as could be. 40 minutes later you’re more likely to remember a riff than a whole song, but the best ones stick with you nonetheless.

I’m tempted to use the phrase “just enough” in describing this loaded little beauty, but I think it gives the wrong idea. Perhaps “less is more” is more to the point, as a number of the elements here are, on their own, nothing special. While proficient, the guitar work is certainly not masterful, and the vocals, while well suited to the music, rumble along complacently in their one little track.

Sauron’s vague gurgles are as deep as you’ve heard and just on the right side of muddy. Especially in contrast to the popping snare and angular guitars, he’s lost in the shuffle. The few moments of alteration (some whispered tones and a few echoing background wails) are welcome oases. Yet, taken as a tone in the abstract, the vocals fit right in with the album’s extremely down-tuned, goblin lair of an atmosphere. The solos, also, succeed mostly for their use than for their own traits. They’re not bad, and some, as on “Nine Steps” and “Blessed” are a lot of fun, but in general they’re more generic than standout. However, they are placed so well within the songs, often coming at very different times from track to track, and are so well built up to that even when you don’t care about them you still appreciate their presence.

Some of you, no doubt, will be fuming at this point because I’ve said nothing about Vitek, and the truth is, I’m not quite sure what to say. Yes, he was only 15 at the time of recording and his chops cannot be questioned. I’ve heard worse drumming from guys twice his age and much more repetitive work from seasoned death metallers. But here too there is a kind of complacency – just think about how many songs start out blasts for the first half of the intro riff followed by a double time double bass line for the remainder? It sounds great, and it shows a welcome willingness to explore the possibilities of a riff as well as a desire to use composition to the band’s advantage, but all told too much time is spent double bassing with sixteenth note ride patterns and snare hits every two measures. The fills, too, while fast and precise, are all short little descents, rarely varied or embellished. All that said, there are enough slower and groovier beats as well as enough displays of prodigious talent behind the kit to keep the drums from being at all a problem, and, like many other things, they seem to exceed the sum of their parts. Like it or not, when his kick drums come barreling through you find your head bobbing along and you realize just how awesome that riff really is.

All in all, what makes this album great – and yes, it is great – is not just the wealth of guitar riffs unleashed by Vogg but their being given the best possible stage on which to perform. The combination of guitar, vocals and drums is relentless without being tedious and draws on just enough good influences to stay relevant even in 2000. If a great fissure opened in the Earth and you were swallowed into it, drawn down into the writhing, flaming abyss and simultaneously sliced and diced, put through a meat grinder and pummeled into dust, Winds of Creation would be the soundtrack to your infernal demise. The album, on the strength of its guitars, is so powerful, so heavy and so appropriately technical it’s hard to understand how this band released the good-but-not-great, altogether tired material that followed.

But maybe it’s not. Maybe this is the culmination of a few years of death metal devotion, instrumental obsession and unexpressed teenage angst. Maybe Decapitated got out 90% of its good ideas in this flurry of death metal infatuation and simply could never match it again. Whatever the case, this album is absolutely loaded with delicious morsels and you’ll find yourself picking at the bones.

Written for www.leprousgarden.com

Dull, boring and repetitive. - 36%

Vaibhavjain, February 17th, 2009

Decapitated, in a very short period of time has become one of the most talked about metal bands today. The band shot to fame with their debut release, “Winds Of Creation”, the one I am reviewing as of now. With this album they have achieved a monumental leap in metal ranks, such that bands can only dream about and this monumental rise in success may be attributed to the fact that in not many bands, the average age to be around 18! The band features Sauron on vocals, Vogg on guitar, and Martin on bass and Vitek on drums.

With such a low average age of the band, and the fact that it has been raising eyebrows and for good reason, you cannot be nod your head to the fact that this band has a lot of talent. They play technical death metal and sound like total rip-offs of Vader. Just imagine Vader, half their age, playing technical death instead, and voila, you have Decapitated. Why, just why, the band have got the amount of praise and success is beyond my realms of basic logic.

Sauron, the vocalist provides low yet loud raspy growl. Though good, it gets very boring after a while and the listener loses all interest because of no variation what so ever through out the entire record. Lets just say that flexibility isn’t exactly what Sauron excels in. The axe work is not even technical. It’s basically a lot of very easy to play riffs played very fast in a lame attempt to make the listener feel go, “WOAH! How did he just do that?” I have always concentrated on the guitar work and this album does have quite a few riffs, just none of them strike a “chord” (heh, I made a lousy joke) within me and aren’t a least bit memorable. There are some, very few and small, but there are a few guitar solos, which is emotionless shredding of not so high quality.

And now we come to Vitek. The drumming is interesting on this record. People act as if he is supposedly the best thing that has happened to metal in recent years. He has speed, and aggression, and lot of it, but the variance or maybe the lack of it makes hearing the drums a tedious affair. The man though is talented and makes no mistake about it and his work on the double bass is exemplary for an experienced drummer, let alone a 16-year-old one. It’s just his overtly powerful tendency to hog on all the limelight that makes his drumming a turn off. His drum fills though are pretty poor and just doesn’t know when to shut the hell up and let others play without him getting in their way. He must realize that he is in a band, and that the music is a combined affort and his alone and get it into the thick head of his that people may want to listen to others too.

The next paragraph is dedicated to Martin’s bass work; it’s effect on the band and how audible it was.

………..

Moving on, this album is 40 minutes of really tedious technical crap. With no variance, no breakdowns, a few moments of guitar soloing and inaudible and ineffective bass this album is a pain in the behind and all together a rather poor experience. There are no jazz elements what so ever and you can so easily predict what’s coming next.

As for the good points, “Nine Steps” is a bearable track, has an audible bass (surprise surprise) and is the best track here. The cover of Slayer’s mandatory suicide is very poorly executed and yet is one of the better tracks here. This is how poorly executed the album is.

If you, for reasons unknown are looking for tedious, emotionless music, which is played with a lot of speed then this, is for you. I’ll probably never listen to this record again.

Absolutely Riff-tastic! - 92%

invaded, February 14th, 2009

This was one of the first records where my young metalhead mind truly went "WTF"... Here were these young guys releasing some of the most brutal and awesomely executed death metal I have ever heard.

Some have given these guys some flack for sounding a bit like their fellow countrymen Vader. This may be true but Decapitated definitely add their own twist on things. For one the music is much faster and more technical, and the rhythm put on display by drummer Vitek, as gifted a skinsman as metal has ever known, and Vogg, the young guitar prodigy is flabergasting. Right from the get-go of the title track, the guitars and drums just pound the listener into submission and force you to take notice. Decapitated had riffs to spare, and these were almost all monsters. This whole album is great but the title track is one of my favorite death metal songs ever.

As previously mentioned Vitek puts on a dazzling performance on the entire record. His blasts, syncopations and accents on riffs really add the extra punch necessary in this music. As previously mentioned, Vogg is a riff monster. Every single one of these tracks has at least a couple of fantastic riffs wherein headbanging is made immediate. "The First Damned" and "The Eye of Horus" are a perfect display of imaginative technical death metal riffing. The tracks groove and pound at the same time, never relenting and leaving the listener gasping for air. The bass is not overly audible but when it is it adds nice texture to the landscape. The vocals are pretty good as well. He wasn't sounding like Frank Mullen yet but there is enough brutal sentiment conveyed in those pipes to add the authenticity necessary for death metal.

Other standout tracks include the devastating "Human's Dust", with a disgustingly fast opening riff and brutal parts throughout. "Nine Steps" grooves its way nicely to the closer, a great cover of Slayer's "Mandatory Suicide". Never has a Slayer song sounded so tight.

Last but not least the production on this album is great. Everyone gets a chance to shine, with emphasis on the guitars and drums(of course). The sound is clear and yet has enough dirt to suitably pulverize any experienced metalhead's ears with sheer brutality.

Truly a must-own for any real death metal fan.

A great creation from decapitated - 90%

Ptxpatrol, November 20th, 2008

I have always regarded this album as a MUST HAVE for any fan of technical death metal. It is possibly one of the very limited albums I've listened too that fall under a category which contains virtually no flaws. There is absolutely nothing I'd change in this album.

The drumming in this album is not as fast as what can be heard in bands such as Hate Eternal, Nile, or Dimmu Borgir etc. but I think that it's splendid. I can't say much else on drums considering I don't play drums.

The guitar work in the album is amazing. It's fast, technical and interesting. It mostly plays with the harmonic minor scale with a lot, A LOT of tremolo picking. There are virtually no sweep techniques to the solos in this album, which is good for anyone who feels that sweeping is over-rated. Very small amount of pinch harmonics as well. It's very practical but still damn amazing.

As for the bass... I feel that sometimes I can hardly hear it. This is probably the only bad thing about the album.

The vocals - what more does your average death metal fan want? Low, intimidating growls. Sauron did an excellent job on the album. there is a lack of variety though, considering he only growls with virtually no screams in the album.

The mood of the album is, well.. I can only describe it as nihilistic.

Truly Brutal - 90%

Five_Nails, July 14th, 2008

There are literally hundreds of technical death metal bands out there, but Poland’s Decapitated really had every aspect of technical death metal down to a science in 2000. Unlike most their later releases, ‘Winds of Creation’ captures a time when Decapitated actually knew what they were doing.

Sauron’s vocals are truly puked into the microphone and enhance the brutality of the release. With few high notes, very unlike other bands even Nile, Decapitated chugs down a road of down-tuned destruction that gives the disc an industrial feel at times and a muddy feel at others. The muddiness is a great escape from the over refined works of other bands that constantly see brutality as being able to figure out every not of their music.

The instruments in this release though, mesh greatly and really show Decapitated as a band rather than a group of guys riffing and calling it a disc. One of the most amazing things about this disc is that there is only one guitar present. The band when seen on stage seems like a conventional rock band with one vocalist, guitarist, bassist, and drummer yet the band plays such brutal music that their looks are truly deceiving. Their one guitar, played by Vogg is stunning as he riffs and shreds through the whole disc. The guitar creates a palpable surge of energy and when coupled with the drums feels at times like at a real concert. This release truly captures what every heavy metal release strives for, the feel that one is in the front row at a concert. The technical riffs are also very entertaining as one can hear at least two new riffs each time one listens to the disc.

The drumming is also well done. Unlike other releases where there is the constant kettle drum sound of snare-beating, drummer Vitek uses rather advanced drumming that puts many black metal drummers to shame. The only time that the music really loses its power is at the disc’s intermission, Dance Macabre which is nothing other than a creepy instrumental. This still complements the release well as it fits in with the usual dark themes of the lyrics and is a good break from the music for a few minutes before the final song on the disc, a Slayer cover called Mandatory Suicide which is performed very well.

This is an all around great release and perfect for any fan of technical death metal. The music is superb, the vocals are outstanding, and the songwriting is terrific. This is truly one of Decapitated’s best releases and Poland’s best death metal bands.

Tedious crap. - 25%

GravesOfTheFathers, March 24th, 2007

Yes, I know I'm in a minority here (look at all the other reviews for this album), but I'm sure I'm not the first to say that this album is an exercise in boring death metal. Yes, it's very technical and difficult to play (I myself cannot play the title track at all, and the band members were about my age when they wrote the material), and yes, it's played a breakneck speeds and is quite brutal. But if you're looking for variation, originality, longevity, or songwriting talent, you'd best look elsewhere.

I won't go into the songs because they all sound the same. Chunky, finger-bending guitar riffs over blast beat drums and a virtually nonexistent bass complement the dreadfully bad vocals from Sauron. Seriously, this guy is completely worthless. He growls along so low that it fades into the music and becomes noise. He has no rhythm whatsoever, and absolutely nothing he does here is interesting at all. The only redeeming part of the vocalist's job here is that he wrote some decent lyrics.

Now, try all that for about forty minutes. You'll either be floored by the brutality or end up going "...did I really just waste my time listening to that?" There are no hooks or interesting parts. This is just petty, boring, stop-start technical death metal. The solos, where they are present, are fast and superbly played, but showcase little to no emotion. Nine Steps is by far the best track, not counting their cover of Slayer's Mandatory Suicide, which absolutely butchers the original but proves to be the most listenable track on the entire album. Yes, folks, it's that bad.

HOLY SHIT - 100%

gone_homocide, February 22nd, 2007

In my search for the most brutal most intense music ever a friend recommended me this album and I almost took a shit in my pants when I heard Winds of Creation for the first time. It seemed like most new death metal was just about how fast the drummer can blast and how deep the singer can growl but this is just phenomenal the guitar is just as fucking fast as the drums and you can hear the actual talent in the style of playing!!!

This album starts with a kick in the ass with the title track and it just builds from there all the way to "Dance Macabre" where everything slows down just to kick your ass again with Decapitated's cover of the Slayer classic "Mandatory Suicide" which is better than the original in my opinion. Every song has monstrous guitar that shreds up the whole recording its fucking brutal.

Most brutal death metal is not as put together as well as this is everything about this album is perfect which is a very rarely used word in this genre of metal. The guitar just shreds you to pieces like a very thin razor blade cutting through an onion. The only part of the album that is weak is "Dance Macabre" but its meant to be that way because it is the true mark of the end of the album and "Mandatory Suicide" is just an added bonus to help you digest the madness your ears just consumed.

This is one of those releases you can listen to over and over and over again without getting sick of it . The best tracks in my opinion are "Winds of Creation" "Blessed" and "Nine Steps". This is a true must have for anyone wanted to hear the best death metal of the new millennium. Its speedy its lengthy its brutal it kicks ass.

Modern Masterpiece - 98%

ChrisDawg88, July 14th, 2006

From their very earliest stages, it seemed a sure thing that Decapitated were destined for greatness in their genre. When one listened to them, the first thought that popped into most people's heads was "How can four teenagers play such demanding music do damn well?" Considering the amazing quality of Winds Of Creation, which was recorded when the members where around 16-18 years of age, you'll likely repeat this to yourself a few times when spinning this stellar album.

Winds Of Creation is a rare breed of modern death metal in that its genuinely intelligent and innovative compositions are matched, rather than eclipsed (as is so common in DM these days) by the technical and brutal nature of the album's sound as a whole. Everything about this work simply oozes talent and skill, and the amount of effort that went into the writing of these songs is apparent from the get-go. If there is one thing that Decapitated have always done better than most modern techy death bands, its writing fucking awesome riffs, and this album is the group's best example of this talent to date. Its extremely rare that guitar riffs this complex are also this catchy (Cryptopsy's None So Vile comes to mind), and the sheer number of riffs packed into each song is astounding, without making the songs feel disjointed. From the awesome opening melodies and stop-starts of the title track to the devestating breakdown at the end of "Nine Steps," WOC is packed with catchy riffage and brilliant song structures. The band doesn't shy away from laying down some sick grooves as well, such as the brutal opening segments of "Blessed" and "Human's Dust." Every track is full to the brim with variation; at the same time, each song has a unifying feel to it that gives it its own identity. One of the things that really stands out about this album is how it retains something of an organic, "raw" feel despite being very technical; Decapitated may play like machines, but the results are very human, and its wonderful.

Speaking of musicianship, its pretty much flawless. Vogg plays his guitar like a fucking weapon, effortlessly unleashing riff after riff of varying tempos together into some of the most memorable segments around, and he shows a competance in melody and dynamics in his soloing that is absent in many of his much older peers in the scene. Drummer Vitek (at 16 years of age!) shows remarkable taste and creativity in his drum arrangements, keeping the various beats and tempos interesting without falling into the constant blasting rut that plagues so much modern DM. Speaking of creativity, listen to this guys drum fills; the quick little drum solos found in songs like the title track and "The First Damned" are great examples of the drums as a viable musical voice in metal rather than just a tool to keep time, and the great little touches like the catchy china cymbal beats in the middle of said title track make it clear how much time was taken in writing these drum parts. Sauron's vocals aren't really breaking any new ground, but the guy has a great tone to his voice and his vocal lines always meld well with the music and add to the flow and mood of each song instead of disrupt it. About the only flaw I can find in the musicianship is that Vitek's blasting segments sometimes lose steam as they go on, and as a result some of the sense of speed and intensity is lost. However, it is a very minor problem that doesn't take away from the music at hand. I can't really comment on Martin's bass playing, as it is mostly inaudible in the mix, but we've pretty much gotten used to that, haven't we? Just assume that if this guy is playing in the company of these other great musicians, that he can play some fucking bass.

In short, Decapitated succeeded on Winds Of Creation where so many like-minded death metal bands have failed; combining technical ingenuity and instrumental flair with fluid, catchy songwriting. Each of these songs is the epitome of what modern death metal should be; add on a creepy atmospheric instrumental and a kick-ass cover of Slayer's "Mandatory Suicide," and you have one of the best death metal albums of all time. While the rest of Decapitated's discography is hit or miss for me, this is the album they were born to write, and to this day few death metal albums made since the genre's hayday in the late 80's/early 90's can really challenge it. An essential listen for all.

Superior DM - 90%

Milo, January 26th, 2005

“Winds of Creation” is great. This album has everything needed in a good DM album, but it’s main characteristic is the diversity. The songs have interesting structures, never following a pattern.

Each song has lots of different sections, with diverse riffs and drumming. These songs are pretty distinct in their own way. The faster parts are more prevalent, but they are always mixed with midpaced moments. Each section has its own riff (no recycling here) and they are very well connected, making the album fluid and easy to understand. You won’t listen to this album and wonder “why did they put that riff here?”. Every idea thrown in here has its meaning. It’s not just a bunch of ideas glued together.

The massive complexity didn’t make this album boring or tiresome in any way. The different sections are all full of nice riffs, some of them pretty complex. There is a technical edge to this album, although that’s not the main idea here. It’s very enjoyable and aggressive but unlike some bands of today, they are musicians who know how to make the songs nice to listen to. I’m sure that even in the first try, you’re going to have lots of riffs, vocal lines and drum patters stuck in your head. But you shouldn’t think this is a “commercial” album in any way: It’s very intense and brutal. Speed is always present, be in the riffs or in the awesome drumwork. The fills are long and cool to listen, the double bass has the perfect tone (it does sound like a machine gun!) and the blastbeats are there just to add to the songs, not to annoy.

It will please every kind of fan. If you like riffs, there’s the title track. If you like it simple and catchy, there’s “Way to Salvation” (my favorite track right here) and if it you want it fast and brutal, there’s the ultra insane “Nine Steps”, but anything here is guaranteed to please any DM fan. The Slayer cover is well done, but IMO they should have chosen something better since “Mandatory Suicide” is pretty bland to me. Why not “Kill Again” or even “Hell Awaits”? Anyway, it’s really that amazing and you must get it.

Essential brutality - 89%

3415, December 11th, 2004

Polish youngsters Decapitated serve up an appetizing brew of old and new. Their brand of death metal is certainly fierce enough to bludgeon even the most hardcore death fanatic. Their slab at musical extremity comes off as a brutalized version of Vader/Morbid Angel blended with the vocal guttural brute force of Cannibal Corpse or Broken Hope, perhaps slightly more interpretation-friendly, but that’s marginal at most.

They display some brutally massive guitar riffs, rhythm-wise resembling Vader on more than one occasion, and although not as clinically precise as their countrymen, they have a more organic feel that’s equally satisfying. The songs are balanced around the four-five minute mark for the most part, but there is enough variation within the songs to ensure that they never become boring.

There are several top quality tracks on offer here, with “The Eye of Horus” perhaps being the most impressive with its neck-cracking rhythms and massive double bass drumming, but this album has basically no bad sections, and with the closure of Slayer’s “Mandatory Suicide” you’re left banging away like there’s no tomorrow.

The overall impression is one of a hungry band that has a bright future ahead of them, and one that will produce several crushing albums in years to come.

Thank You Poland! - 100%

Headbangingcorpse, July 19th, 2004

Thank you decapitated! I was browsing the internet and found decapitated, a DM band from Poland. I checked out some samples from Winds of Creation, which were very good, so I was like what the hell I'll check them out. After listening to this CD, I was in awe. WOC is basically perfect. The production is top-notch, every instrument can be heard perfectly, as said by a couple other reviewers. The drums are incredible and never off at all. They play together with the guitar on every beat which brings out the overall brutality. The guitar riffs are probably the fastest ones I've heard. They are mostly very technical and as fast as hell. If you don't believe me, listen to "Blessed", and "Human's Dust", and you'll change your mind. Practically every track has a mind-blowing guitar solo that finishes the song off perfectly. The one towards the end of "Nine Steps" is fucking unbelievable, and will leave you wanting for more. The vocals on this album are extremely low growls that fit the music very well. I really can't begin how to describe how well done this album is, and you have to give them credit because of their young age, as another reviewer said. If you love brutal, technical death metal, then this is the album for you. Check out their other CDs as well. Decapitated is a band not to be over-looked!

Decapitated "Decapitates" the competition - 96%

MrSuicide, March 21st, 2004

I got this album on Christmas Day. I had already heard the song Winds Of Creation and I was blown away by it. The speed, the intensity and the power behind Decapitated's songs are amazing. For being as young as they were when they made this CD, the song structures, musicianship and technicality are amazing. Their guitarist plays very fast, but does it flawlessly. The solos he does are great, and sound fucking amazing. He gets a great tone out of whatever guitar he uses.

The drummer flys on his blastbeats and double bass. At first, I thought it was a drum machine, but I got proved wrong. He has got to be one of the fastest drummers out there. My only problem with him is the tone of his toms. They sound crappy, and he could have gotten a better sound out of them if he tuned them differently.

Then comes the bad part. There's basically no bass at all. I'm sure their bassist is highly talented, but you can hardly hear him. He needed to be higher up in the mix to fit in with everyone.

The vocals are like most Death Metal, but they add to the songs. Sauron has a very deep, gurgly voice and does his part very well.

Overall, this is a must by for Death Metal fans, and a great buy if you want to hear something that takes alot of talent to play.

Decapitate this! - 100%

Apophis, March 18th, 2004

Well.

What more do you want from an album?
This has energy, riffs to die for, spiralling solos kept on the side of just whats needed and never too much, precision like never before, more groove than a freightload of kingsize records, and of course it's damn fucking heavy.

Some (magazine) critics have taken it upon their overpaid underappreciative fat arses to try and label this as being "too Vader". Well I'm sorry, but if Vader released albums like this every time, then quite simply I'm going to have to go out and build a shrine to Vader as this album in my opinion is both unique and damn good.

The appeal for me tapered off gradually with the subsequent releases, 'Nihility' and the recent album 'The Negation', with the band losing a lot of the creativity and awesome potential shown on this album.

Forget what you've heard about death metal. Forget all the other bands. Believe the hype. THIS is how 21st Century Death Metal should sound.

Efficient slab of death metal - 84%

MacMoney, March 23rd, 2003

I've never been much of a death metal fan unless you count old-school death metal like Possessed or Slaughter. Sure I've liked a few select albums like Grave's debut or Miasma's Changes but the Polish death metal scene never struck me as anything that interesting. That is, until I heard Decapitated's debut, Winds of Creation.

Now there isn't anything that strikes as really spectacular but everything on the album is executed very well. All the players are proficient with their instruments and Sauron's low guttural vocals fit the music perfectly and bring their own mark which even more sets the band apart from others. Mostly the music is technical death metal sounding somewhat like a mix between Poland's Vader and Suffocation (another fave of mine) but Vogg's guitaring style and Sauron's vocals distinguishes the band quite much from the aforementioned two bands. As mentioned Vogg's guitaring is one of the best aspects in the album. His guitaring is very clever and catching yet brutal and technical. His smart leads bring variety to the album though there could've been more lead guitaring on the album.

Probably the only minus in the album is its shortness. Only 34 minutes without the throwaway outro and the Slayer cover, which is nice and all but doesn't hold a candle to Decapitated's own songs. I really could've listened to more of this.

THIS ALBUM WILL TEAR...YOUR...SOUL...APART! - 100%

Stash, February 8th, 2003

HOLY SHIT THIS ALBUM FUCKING RULES!

Do you like brutal death metal? Do you like Technical Metal? If you answered YES for both questions, this album is for you! Winds of Creation, the debut of these young and brilliant song writers, is fantastic! The musicianship level of this album is spectacular. The guitars are played with god-like precision and the drum skins are pounded with full power and technicality at a level that is rarely seen today. The material on this album is flawless. The riffs are far from standard and the song structures are far from formulaic. The title track starts the album off with a brutal riff and soon enough the blast beat frenzies, and the pounding of double bass skins are set to “on.” Long intricate riffs and deep incomprehensible growls make this album worth the money.

I am very fond of Decapitated’s complex song structure and progressions. The solos are far from the normal Locrian (or EVIL) mode normally heard in metal soloing (death and thrash) and tend to vary greatly.

So, from this review, these guys may come off as cheap polish Suffocation ripoffs. This assumption is incorrect. While the suffocation influence is great, these guys twist around all that is death and thrash metal. They bring a new sound with new riffing styles and can groove like no other death metal band!!!!

Songs including Winds of Creation, and The First Damned deal with nihilism and are capable of keeping a steady groove throughout. You can bob your head, pump your fist, thrash around and strut at the same time with this CD blasting on headphones!

Highlights stand at the title track, The First Damned, Nine Steps and Human’s Dust. This entire album is mint, however those tracks stand out as the best on a relative level J. How could I forget to mention the final track, Mandatory Suicide; a Slayer cover?! Of course, one would think the deep guttural vocals would butcher this classic 80’s slayer tune, however I personally will listen to this and the slayer song interchangeably. Decapitated’s version is faster, heavier, and includes soloing that is far better than Kerry and Jeff’s atonal wankery :-D. The double bass pounding is far more prominent on this than Slayer’s version, which give it a whole new sound that is far more brutal and heavy(not necessarily better, but definitely different and give it that Decapitated sound).

The production is very clear on this album and there is no blatant triggering (unlike Nihility) which gives it a more raw down to earth sound than most brutal triggered death metal. Decapitated keep the polish metal scene alive and their new breed of technical death metal mark a new path for metal and its sub genres.