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pretty awesome - 88%

planiol, May 20th, 2009

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this band. I decided to check it out, and I must say I was not disappointed. With a name like Merlin, you would think they play power metal. They do not. They play death and grind metal. And they do it well. So what does a female-fronted death metal band from Russia sound like?

They sound like Morbid Angel! The guitars really remind me of Morbid Angel’s style, with lots of artificial harmonics, screams, etc. And Mary’s vocals remind me of pre-Domination David Vincent. Kudos to Mary. Her vocals are sick and awesome, perfect for this music. And the insert says that she wrote all the music and lyrics. Holy Shit!

The music moves along at a good pace, and it’s full of bursts of machine gun drumming (reminds me of Cryptopsy drumming). Those parts sound like grindcore, and it keeps this from sounding too much like Morbid Angel. There are sweet riffs and good solos all over the place too. Sometimes they slow it down as well, so it does not get monotonous.

This is really some great death metal, with grind influences. It is sick, heavy, brutal, etc., just the way death metal should be. My only complaint is that there is some chanting chorus that sounds silly in one of the songs. I think it’s the one called “Die.”

Who knew that a woman from Russia would write music that sounds like it could have been made by some guys in Florida in the 1990's? I would recommended this to everyone who likes death metal, especially fans of Morbid Angel.