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No Remorse - 75%

torchia, February 14th, 2017
Written based on this version: 2016, Digital, Nuclear War Now! Productions (Bandcamp)

Musical supergroups are often best avoided, especially within metal - the clash of big-haired, perpetual adolescent egos and differing approaches to their 'art' colliding in a result that is later found in bargain bins and the also-ran columns of polished turd publications.

However, due care would be sensible when attempting to lump Death Worship into the above category. Indeed, while the pedigree of its participants is a war metal wet dream, comprised of Blasphemy, Conqueror and Revenge veterans, there's a tangible (and wholly intentional) air of disdainfulness that wafts about the project, quick to shut down any faux camaraderie and further dilutions of their 'die-hards only' aural bedlam.

The 'Exterminaton Mass' EP received a limited edition release at the Nuclear War Now! Fest Volume 5 in November 2016 to fairly solid critical acclaim. Though some dissenting voices have considered the release par for the course for all concerned and questioned its worth, it is arguable that Death Worship, in a refinement of elements, presents an approach and sound more bewitching and varied than its better known forbears.

Of course, comparisons to Conqueror and Revenge are thoroughly obvious, if not even a tad lazy - but a band fronted by the likes of R. Förster and J. Read was only ever going to produce one sound. In a recent interview, Förster described Death Worship as his interpretation of the natural progression of that which began with Conqueror, while Read has done similarly with the unrelenting savagery that is Revenge.

All ingredients considered, including a backing vocals appearance by Nocturnal Grave Desecrator and Black Winds (of Blasphemy), 'Extermination Mass' does adhere quite closely to the Conqueror/Revenge/Axis of Advance (and altogether Canadian) school of black/death metal, with its militant, precision machine-gun percussion, distorted diesel engine heaviness, inhuman vocalisations and the odd unbridled guitar solo.

Don't expect a memorable riff or anything that really sets one track apart from the others. Much like Revenge, Death Worship primarily set out to create an atmosphere of unrelenting attack and hatred, but something that this EP can boast is the welcome presence of a few well placed, toe-tapping hooks, an element Förster himself has commented is all too lacking in the output of many contemporary acts pushing this particular style of metal and unreservedly influenced by Blasphemy et al.

Though acts such as Tetragrammacide and Nyogthaeblisz have taken black/death metal to its most extreme (yet still enjoyable) regions, generally sounding closer to harsh noise with blast beats, Death Worship's application of experience, classic structures and injections of an unflinchingly heavy metal heritage does lend its out-turn a certain something about which many similar bands remain clueless - with only the likes of Revenge and New Zealand's Diocletian and Witchrist coming close to emulating that Conqueror legacy.

*Originally published on metalireland.com, 25 January 2017.