Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2020
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Death Is Certain Life Is Not! - 85%

TheStormIRide, January 5th, 2016

French death metal mainstays Affliction Gate have returned with their latest offering, Dying Alone, a four track EP of pummeling, no holds barred death metal. Though this is the band’s first release through Transcending Obscurity, they’ve amassed two prior EP’s and a full length since their formation in 2006. Dying Alone brings the listener through varying stages of anguish, struggle and strife; a seventeen minute journey through the depths of human accountability, with the only certainty being that, regardless of circumstances, we all die alone.

While band’s lyrical themes may be rooted in the realms of human thought and emotional experience, their music is a real it gets. The band describes themselves as old school death metal, but a more apt description would be the steamrolling, oft-militant school of Bolt Thrower or Hail of Bullets. Despite ascribing to that style, the band brings an extremely varied songwriting style to the table. The seventeen minute album spends most its time hammering your skull with a mix of fast paced, chunky riffing and angular chord progressions, but the band slows things up with a few crawling tempos that could sink ships.

Jackhammered double bass runs, powerful bass lines and deep, torn throat vocals move the tracks forward, offering a solid foundation for the frenetic death metal riffing, which is truly the centerpiece here. The varied songwriting approach allows things to flow smoothly, from the Those Once Loyal cant of “Negative Lucidity” to the nods of Left Hand Path during “Manicheism Inertia”. Some of the riffing brings underlying melodies, but make no mistake, this is not a melodic album despite the moments of catchiness. Weaving through their influences, Affliction Gate brings a crushing album that does not relent in the least bit from start to finish.

Despite proudly displaying their influences, Affliction Gate offers an extremely memorable slab of death metal that they should be proud to call their own. Emotive yet bludgeoning, this French troupe seems to be the act to beat when it comes to heavy handed, steamrolling death metal. Fans of Hail of Bullets, Bolt Thrower and Unleashed take note, because Affliction Gate is poised to make an attempt on the throne.

Written for The Metal Observer.