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Bringing back the glory - 88%

Mailman__, June 11th, 2018

After years of fairly tame metal bands dominating the mainstream metal airwaves, it is nice to see newer bands emerging with old school sounds.  One of these bands, Cist, have resurrected the classic deathrash sound that developed in the late 1980s.  Sounding like another Master or Solstice, Cist released a new EP earlier this year, and it's full of deathrash groove and speed.

This band reminds me a lot of Death.  Their vocalist sounds like a resurrected Chuck Schuldiner, and one of the beginning riffs of "Incubation" sounds like Death's "Flattening of Emotions."  There are other riffs on here that remind me of Death, but this is the most notable.  Cist is basically Death if they dropped the technicality for thrash metal.

The riffs aren't too original.  I may have made this clear in the previous paragraph, but it is good to reiterate.  Despite the lack of originality, it's not like this is the poor kind of unoriginal.  This is the kind of unoriginality where a band wanted to sound like another, more popular band and give it their own sound.  And, let's be honest, unless you're remarkably uptight, you probably like a band that can successfully pull off sounding like a band that you look up to.  The music itself is good, and so is the production.  I can hear everything clearly without too much overlap.  This is nice because sometimes these guys get mildly technical, so the good production helps make that more defined.

There's no real problem with this EP.  The fact that they sound like Death, to me, isn't anything that I'll mark them down for because, again, they can actually pull it off.  This is good deathrash,  It's heavy and it hits hard.

Overall Rating: 88%

Originally written for themetalvoid.wordpress.com

Resistant organic forms. - 80%

GrizzlyButts, February 23rd, 2018
Written based on this version: 2018, Digital, Metal Race Records (Bandcamp)

The history of death metal is a corpse so heavily molested and defiled that many modern death metal bands barely need to tickle it’s desiccated husk for the sake of aesthetic familiarity rubbing off on their sound. The sheer similitude of worship-acts is enough to trigger that Pavlovian conditioning in fans who are rabid worldwide for more music born from the exalted intensification of extreme metal influences within thrash metal in the second half of the 80’s. There exists a major divide between pandering retro releases and genuine case study that both invoke ‘old school death metal’ hysterics, the line is only hard to draw if you don’t actually listen to 80’s and early 90’s death metal. Cist’s music is at once an immediate rush of exacting authentic emulation and sincere variation that reeks of dedicated earnest interest in death metal’s rawest, most inspired era.

To point directly to Death‘s ‘Leprosy’ upon hearing “Antisceptic” is pure laziness as Cist more closely resembles the Schuldiner/Tardy tonal mixture that was early Morgoth along with riffs that jump straight out of early Pestilence wheelhouse. ‘Leprosy’ doesn’t sound exactly how you remember it, the drum sound is incredibly distinct and few Death influenced bands incorporate it, including Cist. Going even further down the ‘Consuming Impulse’ wormhole is “Incubation” which shreds between “Chronic Infection”-esque riffs and some heavier grooves akin to ‘Slowly We Rot’ era Obituary. The gist of what Cist does over the course of the EP’s five songs is deftly insert themselves into that death/thrash space of ~1989 where American and European thrash musicians took great inspiration from Death and Morbid Angel alike without losing their grip on their thrash notes. This puts Cist’s vision on par with bands like Protector and Massacra as each stuffed their thrasher riff-fists deeper into death metal’s brutality in 1991.

The trouble with a concept so focused on emulating such specific death metal sound is that there are already hundreds of bands that sound like this to choose from. For their Pestilence structured riffs and early Death inspired sound they aren’t pushing the old school kick anywhere new or interesting. To lump Cist in with bands like Gruesome and Morfin is a shame when there are bands like Skeletal Remains, Tomb Mold and Horrendous taking authentic old school sounds to new or at least highly polished places. Besides these guys love brutal thrash like Demolition Hammer, Solstice and Devastation as much as I do, so amping up those influences (like Greek band Rapture has) would be a lot more interesting than joining the sea of Death-alikes out there. But hey, whatever I’m just some idiot. Fact is that this stuff rips and bleeds authentic old school death metal blood all over the place. If you have a soft spot for this style then Cist is an important up and comer to check out.

Attribution: http://grizzlybutts.com/2018/02/10/cist-the-frozen-casket-2018-review/