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Holy boobie fucking Jesus, this album tore my head off and more or less defecated down my esophagal passage the first time I heard it about ten years ago, and it still crushes my nards and makes me its bitch to this day. Thirteen tracks of ferocious, speedy death metal awaits the lucky recipient of what is probably Malevolent Creation's most violent release to date.
This offering from MC is markedly different from their other releases. Part of that can be attributed to the personnel on board "In Cold Blood" (from this point to be referred to as ICB). Drummer Derik Roddy (who needs no introduction), and guitarist John Paul Soars (who would later form Divine Empire with ICB's lineup sans Phil) make their first and only appearance on a Malevolent Creation album. The production is also different, being pretty bass-heavy, though not quite "Litany" level. This was also one of Scott Burns' last production jobs and it fits the whole feeling of crushing brutality we have on offer here. It's clear enough to hear all the instruments though the bass can be hard to hear.
Phil and J.P. crank out some nasty riffage that is bludgeoning and even catchy in places (see the last minute of "Vision of Malice"), Jason's vocals are deep and basically pissed off sounding and does utilize some higher screams but his bass is low in the mix, though his lines at the beginning of "Seven" does a great job of leading into the riff that follows. Derik shows that he did indeed have some variation in his playing before going the nonstop blastbeat bit in Hate Eternal, but he does tend to favor blasts over slower beats here. Still his work here is pretty impressive.
Songwise, ICB is not too varied with nearly all the songs fitting into the categories "faster" and "much faster". The only really slow crushing number is the title track, which is also the longest song here and has a nice solo a little more than halfway through. Most of the other tracks here are warp speed or a tad slower. Opener "Nocturnal Overload" opens with a scream and a blast before Jason starts spewing words about soldiers going off to war. "Compulsive" features some good drumwork and a nice solo. I'm not sure who does which solos on In Cold Blood, as they're not credited in the liner notes, but they shred just the same. "Vision of Malice" as mentioned before, has some really catchy riffs and some pounding double bass work while "Preyed Upon" is probably the best song on offer here and the most varied, featuring a couple solos, blistering drumwork and some violent lyrics ("Bare hands that broke your neck...and smashed your FUCKING SKULL!!!!"). Finally, "Seizure" ends the disc and is the fastest song here, the riffs are dizzying in nature and the drums somehow keeping up.
With thirteen tracks on ICB, it can be alot to take in, especially as there is no acoustics to give you a break from the brutality. As a whole, ICB clocks in at 42 minutes and change, which is perfect in my humble opinion for this type of violence. Those of you that lean more towards pre-2000 death metal should get this, as your metal boner should be sated.