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A Mind Bored - 35%

Petrus_Steele, July 8th, 2019
Written based on this version: 2013, CD, Century Media Records

In the Minds of Evil sounds like the band's early roots, eliminating the technical guitar melodies for the most part from the last four albums or so. I won't be surprised if this album will also fall short, giving the requirements of the record label and whether the band actually wanted to go back to their roots, but modernly contemplated in unoriginal material. I think The Stench of Redemption and Till Death Do Us Part provided the best material in years and should've been that way.

While I think this time around the band actually worked AS A BAND than ever before, being credited for lyrical work more often and signifying respect. However, it's also the last one to feature the current lineup, giving how Ralph was replaced by Kevin Quirion and also unfortunately passing away years after, it's also the last record with Jack Owen. Assuming things indeed went well after this record was released, let's see if it's actually better than expected, and if the new guitarist brings out his best.

Most of the album's offering is very forgettable and uninspiring. Was really hard to find something interesting or worth mentioning. The guitars didn't have the same power as older records, and even the first two records sound much powerful than what this had to offer. Bass is barely mixed, unlike the previous album. The drums are not inspiring in any shape or form and also lack the craziness that Legion alone possessed, and Glen's vocals are meh at best.

The only ones that were good are Even the Gods Can Bleed, which has great guitar riffs and chorus. The drums sound good enough and the vocals aren't as bad. And End the Wrath of God, which actually disproved the claim that the band went back to their roots, as this song is somewhat crazy (in the good way, of course) and has them shredded, technical guitar solos and is overall a heavy track.

In the Minds of Evil has some potential unlike the third abomination in the discography that is To Hell with God. Overall, the musicianship is great and despite not featuring the best songs it's always important to have band mates working together in the studio. The best tracks are Even the Gods Can Bleed and End the Wrath of God.

Their best since Stench of Redemption - 83%

6CORPSE6GRINDER6, July 5th, 2017

After Deicide released the decent but lackluster Scars of the Crucifix and the Hoffman brothers left, you didn't know what to expect from a band with such a consolidated line-up. Luckily, they were replaced by 2 guitarists even better than them: Jack Owen -ex Cannibal Corpse- and master lead guitarist Ralph Santolla. Composition now relies primarily on drummer Steve Asheim with contributions from the rest of the band too. The infeed from the new guitarists, some serious riffs from Jack’o and solos by Santolla, made Stench of Redemption an absolute killer but they couldn't consolidate that line-up; Santolla left the band a couple of years later, leaving no room for a second part of that masterpiece. It isn't until In the Minds of Evil that they got back in shape after a couple of ultra boring albums.

I'm not quite sure how the addition of Kevin Quirion on guitars to replace Santolla makes Deicide better, since he played on those mediocre recent albums too, but checking the songwriting credits I noticed he composed the most memorable and catchy tunes of this record, saving it. The rest is pretty good too but doesn't have the same impact, take for example the album opener written by him, it's an absolute killer. Another thing that fascinates me is how easily he mimics the traditional Deicide sound, some of his contributions sound more Deicide than Asheim’s which is kind of funny. The classic tetric guitar lines are still there, melodic but full of evil, fast and relentless. The same mid tempo, laid back style of riffing accompanied by a thrash drum beat of their golden era is still present, but the drummer has gotten way better with the years, adding a modern touch to the vintage sound of the band by playing faster and more machine like and aggressively. Bass guitar doesn't stand out that much but it's there somewhere beneath the strings and the drums. They tried to polish a shiny tone with both weight and glitter but the level isn't high enough. Guitars sound amazing, heavily distorted, sharp as axes with a warm vibrating fuzz on them. Vocals are mainly low grunts with some occasional mid pitched screams but the shrieks from the old days are gone, Benton feels the weight of the years but manages to pull out a solid performance. In the percussion department we have a beast kicking the shit out of the drum kit. Blast beat sections and fills are executed perfectly at insane speeds and the quality of the recording favours it a lot. The contrast between blast beats, mid tempo sections with different combinations on the bass drums and “tupa tupa” parts makes the record very rich rhythmically.

The production is what you expect from a band of this tier: crystal clear. The mix is technically perfect and the album itself is an enjoyable piece of old school death metal produced with modern recording techniques and equipment and a brilliant drummer. Even if it's not legendary, it is the best record they released in years, giving the feel of a comeback. I thought they were dead.

Deicide - In The Minds of Evil - 85%

Orbitball, June 11th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2013, CD, Century Media Records

My initial opinion was that this was a total "dud" compared to past releases, though after that original thought, I realized that yes this is the new generation of Deicide. It's actually one of their best in years. The reason is because the music on here is HEAVY and diverse. It features guitars that gallop in essence, also featuring bar chord mania with maniacal speed picking frenzies. Some of the drums seem like inhumanly possible, though Steve still pulls it off. They also use a lot of lead guitar giving it a more "eerie" sound, though this is not by any means the darkest Deicide release in their discography. Steve writes the music, though during the Hoffman brothers era they were different.

Glen focuses more on low-end vocals since he's aged though there are some back-up screams. It does fit with the music definitely, it's just not as intense as when their debut came out circa 1990. However, the quality of the music is still good enough to give this a "B" rating. The leads are active quite a lot and they seem to insist on their fretboard flying. This is a little bit longer of an album, though it's under 40 minutes. Still, the quality in the songwriting and the new era of the band seems to focus more on a whole different sort of guitar layout that what early Deicide listeners like myself were used to hearing. This album I didn't think was mediocre death metal, it has some passion there still.

There's more experimental guitars here. The lead guitar will go off when Glen's singing or they'll use rhythm guitar over chorus verses or just Glen spewing out blasphemous lyrics which seem to mix well with the overall sound. They never really did that much with the old lineup. The experimenting and obliteration of musical annihilation remains to be, but the music is better than it has been in a long while. That's why a lot of people tended to favor their older because it was innovative and highly influential in the death metal world. You'll never get that same quality of music from them, but on 'In the Minds of Evil', they show musical progression from their new era of members. Going strong!

You will not find the same precision in leads as the Hoffman brothers, but still you get musical variety on here. The rhythms, leads, production, drums and vocals definitely are likeable because of the way everything seemed to fit together for a solid album. These musicians still show that they're working hard to carry the legacy of the old to the new. I think that the bulk of the music in terms of the rhythm guitar is a lot of tremolo picking, but overall, it's a well carried out album both musically or you might be apt to say in composition. The variety with those lead guitar moments that play over the rhythms seem to be a change from how they used to conduct their music.

So many people are stuck on the first two albums, I myself was considered to be one. But on here, the music still is quality because of the experimenting and they use some variety in vocals, though not much of all really. I think that they decided a different approach on here, using a lot of fast guitar, but they change it up a little and the fact that they're using a lot of leads and harmonies over the vocals to give that "evil" sense that's always brewing with this blasphemous death metal band. Keep an open mind to what they've put out here and just remember the new generation of Deicide is here ever since the departure of the Hoffman brothers and has been for over 10 years! Get this one!

Redemption of the irredeemable - 95%

SufferTheCircleOfTyrants, June 6th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2013, CD, Century Media Records

After being blown away by their first two albums, I found myself checking out after the bands third release Once Upon the Cross. It seemed that while the production quality had stepped up the sheer ferocity of the music had stepped down. Fast forward twenty years. Hate Eternal and Entombed A.D. are coming to town on a tour headlined by none other than Deicide. Being a big H.E. and Entombed fan I will be attending the show so I decided to check out the latest Deicide album to see if it would be worth hanging out to watch the headliners. I found the latest album was twenty thirteen’s In the Minds of Evil. After listening to several of the samples on line I immediately hit the download button.

As always the foundation of the music is laid down by Asheim and Benton. The drums guide the album at a nice steady pace that allows the guitars to lay down some heavy ass riffs. Asheim adds in plenty of fills and nice cymbal work (see Misery of One) to accent the music. Benton’s bass follows Asheim just fine, nothing exceptional to report on this although it is nice to have it audible in the mix.

Benton seems to have developed a much deeper vocals in comparison to his work on the first two albums. Gone are the dual high low vocals I enjoyed so much in songs like Dead But Dreaming and Sacrificial Suicide. While I miss the higher pitched vocals I do enjoy the new deeper low so much better than the original. It makes the album that much darker and contributes nicely to the overall heaviness of the the album.

The guitar duties are handled by Jack Owen and Kevin Quirion. I’ve never heard these gentlemen before and I couldn’t tell you who was playing what part. What I can tell you is that they do an outstanding job here. The riffs are heavy and memorable as hell (see entire album). The soloing is done in fine taste adding the right accents in the right places without disintegrating into high pitched oblivion. The standout moment for this is on Between the Flesh and the Void but is true for the entire album.

Overall this album is exceptional. I’ve found nine of the eleven tracks to be truly memorable and the other two enjoyable. I’ve listened to the album in its entirety over two dozen times in the two weeks since I purchased it. Needless to say I will be staying to watch the headliners.

A Groovy Entry By Florida's Own. - 90%

Spiderystraw11, December 6th, 2014
Written based on this version: 2013, CD, Century Media Records

Every Satanist and their hellhound have been asking, how exactly did this album turn out? To be blunt, (as the title states) this album is one of the grooviest albums this band has ever recorded but it still manages to clench onto the maniacal growls, insane drumming skills, and stellar guitar shredding (and of course the bass guitar is stunning as well!) that was displayed on their older albums (Deicide, Legion, etc.). Regarding the vocals, Benton stuck to his old school growls and grunts and tended to stray away from doing the high-pitched screams as much as he used to. He has not lost his luster but has in fact shown extreme energy compared to the last few records. He (Glen Benton) also wrote some of the most memorable lyrics that he has written in a long time, such as “I curse the air you breathe, All men of the cloth, What was will never be, Your cause is lost” or “nullify resistance to control our lives sterilized creation, born to bear your lie mortified in madness by a man made god the solitude of sadness the father and the son.”

Now onto one of the best features of this album, the guitars. Jack Owen (Ex Cannibal Corpse) and Kevin Quirion have lucked out on this entire 11-track album by adding the most catchy, rhythmic and brutal guitar riffs and solos that (once again) the band has not done it in a legitimate way for quite a while. Turns out Owens past experience with Cannibal Corpse has paid off well, yet again so have Quirion's skills. Benton’s bass is on key and stays in rhythm with the drums (which is pretty gnarly if I must say so my self) and he really shows big improvement compared to past times (this album seems to be a big improvement overall).

The drummer, Steve Asheim, has been in the band just as long as Benton and has aged just as well as him. Although he is aging, it certainly doesn’t stop him from delivering a grotesque performance along with blast beats, rhythmic beats, and other such gifts. This drummer has got to be one of the craziest in my book and I certainly enjoy his work on this album, along with the album itself. I was very impressed with this release and I am seeing a dark and devious future ahead of Deicide. I honestly cannot wait until they enter the studio to record, yet again another great album.

In The Minds Of Evil - 71%

Buarainech, January 31st, 2014

Deicide are a band who certain people have been wanting to fail for the past few years. On the one hand you have the keyboard warriors for whom Glenn Benton is a favourite easy target for all the bullshit he spouts (remember when he was supposed to kill himself 13 years ago?) and then the perpetual grudge-holders who can tell you the times and places of every gig the band have cancelled on them (one friend of mine is up to 7 cancellations now!) Those lucky enough to have seen Deicide in the past decade comment on how lacking in passion their live shows now are, and let us not forget the exiled Hoffman brothers who not doubt have been watching the band's second career slump with 'Til Death Do Us Part and To Hell With God and are rubbing their hands with glee waiting for an implosion. With all these vultures circling though Benton and Asheim have pulled something altogether not that bad out of the hat and stuck their middle fingers up in true Florida Death Metal redneck style, probably mildly annoying everyone in the process who was wanted to see a complete musical self-immolation.

The distorted Michael Caine in The Dark Knight quote that begins the opening title track here is admittedly a bit dumb and doesn't exactly instil confidence, but the track itself is fairly decent- riffy, up-tempo and memorable. It's not quite an opening salvo on par with “The Stench Of Redemption”, but it's a shite side better than “The Beginning Of The End” from Til Death Do Us Part and “To Hell With God”.

“Thou Begone” and “Godkill” keep things fairly decent, the latter having a more than decent vocal line in the chorus, but 4 tracks in “Beyond Salvation” drops the first dud. It isn't much shorter than the rest of the songs here, but its generic riffs going absolutely nowhere and this is a theme continued on several tracks like “Fallen To Silence.” Others like “Kill The Light Of Christ” and “End The Wrath Of God” get by on a decent riff or vocal line, but the main problem with this album is how formulaic its songs are. “Misery Of One” is the only track to really break out of this rut with its sweet running tempo change lead that proves to be the most memorable point of this album. Nothing else really comes close to match it, anything else of quality like Jack Owen's soloing on “Even The Gods Can Bleed” is so because of its reassuring sameyness. Benton's vocals for example are also stronger than the average for this album on this track, with him sounding slightly more intelligible, but thankfully not more intelligent. This is Deicide after all- single-minded bloody blasphemy is exactly what we want to hear. [7/10]

From WAR ON ALL FRONTS A.D. 2013 zine-

A Release So Borderline in the Minds of Mine - 55%

HanSathanas, December 11th, 2013

Not too exciting, not too disappointing. I sort of have this mixed feeling towards Deicide post ‘The Stench of Redemption’ era. Being a fanboy of the band, I should say that the latter release is up there with the eponymous debut and Legion. Anything recorded by the band after those two releases are still damn good too, particularly the bass-heavy ‘Once Upon the Cross’ and the ugly punch in the gut ‘Serpents of the Light’. Up to that point, I still am hopeful that Deicide will dutifully fulfill their fans’ need by perpetuating their trademark blasphemous brand of death metal. No trends. No sellouts. Satan to the bone!

I still considered Insineratehymn as good death metal record of the millennium. There’s nothing fantastic about it except that it is still listenable and memorable unlike its terrible follow up ‘In Torment in Hell’. Bad production, conventional and predictable song structures, plenty of nice tremolo pickings, but that’s all there is to it. With ‘Scars of the Crucifix’, the Hoffman brothers do come up with some fucking heavy riffs, especially on the album title track and the Satan-loving anthem ‘When Heaven Burns’. Those two songs stand out on their own. The rest is just fillers, evidence of a band that is already running low on creativity, like an old freight train sighing black smoke after years of self-inflicted abuse. When the Hoffman brothers quit the band after ‘Scars…’, I may not be the one who questioned the overall future of Deicide. Will they ever be the same? Are we seeing the beginning of an end for Benton and fellow marksman Steve Asheim? It’s a decision that disappoints me quite a bit at first, knowing that both Eric and Brian are highly talented guitarists in their own special way. It doesn’t matter who’s the bad guy, the future of one of my favorite bands is stake here! Thank God, or thank Satan, that Benton and Asheim decided to hire Ralph Santolla and Jack Owen, big surprise. Since it is known before that Owen appears to lose interest in metal as seen in Centuries of Torment DVD where he just plays guitar with heart and mind void of passion and enthusiasm. Of course, ‘The Stench of Redemption’ is an album that will always be my favorite after the first four. Owen and Santolla showcased a level of musicality previously unheard of in Deicide; abundance of melodic and catchy riffs that always make me hum to each song in the album. Alas, this brief return to form is cut short by two crappy follow ups. Enough said.

Like I said, I don’t have much excitement and hope in anticipation of ‘In the Minds of Evil’. My guess is that this record is just a continuation of ‘To Hell with God’, and right I was. With Santolla’s gone, he is replaced by Kevin Quirion. While he does add some quite nice touch on this album, but you know, that’s just all about it. Don’t you just love it when bands say that ‘this is the best record we’ve ever done so far?’ I think a lot of bands say that before releasing a new album. It’s just a self-comforting, damage control remark that tries to reassure long time fans that they won’t suck, going as far as to compare to the band’s magnum opus ‘Legion’. That record, ladies and gentlemen, is beyond comparison. It’s the holy grail of death metal like other notable releases of its era. But In the Minds of Evil? Seriously? Generally, the riffs are less powerful. It’s not even remotely similar to those written in ‘Once Upon the Cross’, a great album that many fans considered to be the end of Deicide Satanic death metal aural assault. Still, the rhythm progression is somewhat less predictable and the solos are still good to my ears. No wankery, no excesses, just straight up evil lead works. They serve quite a good purpose as enhancing the overall atmosphere of the album and set the tone for each song. In one sitting, listening to this album without looking at the tracklist gives me the feeling of déjà vu. You know, I’ve heard this before. I’ve heard this on the previous tracks. This is also another problem of this record that prevents me from fully enjoying it; each song sounds the same! Damn man, at least ‘Insineratehymn’ has a little bit of variation in it but this record reeks of familiarity, and that for me, is not a good thing. The clean production doesn’t help much either. While it allows us to independently verify the existence of each instrument played and the clear, vibrant evidence of each band member’s contribution, this too doesn’t seem to cut it. The overall sounds lack a punch and the bass is stretched too thin on this record. Oh boy, this part alone is disappointing on so many levels. Perhaps I don’t have a good loudspeaker but what the hell; even ‘Serpents of the Light’ has some grating bass end to it. And no, the cymbals are too metallic they sound inorganic, rather artificial or near computer generated. I have no problem with how each member plays, like Steve Asheim who, after all these years he still has the stamina and ferocity despite forgetting what his name was during one occasion (those who watched his brief drum tutorial video on YouTube would get the idea!).

Gone is the annoying multi layered shrieks in favor of straightforward guttural blasphemy by Benton. That is something that I considered a good move. After all, I’m already tired of his demonic shrieks that seem to be all over the place in ‘Scars of the Crucifix’. The lyrics? Oh let’s not talk about that, Benton is still writing about pretty much the same thing so it’s nothing new to us fans of Deicide. The only tracks that stand out to me are ‘Kill the Light of Christ’ and ‘End the Wrath of God’. I can feel quite a significant amount of energy being channeled by these two titles. On ‘Kill the Light of Christ’, Deicide flirted with melodic entrance before plunging deep into the abyss of hell like they always do. ‘End the Wrath of God’ is reminiscent of ‘Desecration’ from ‘Stench…’ but too bad, this song is actually good and yet it is rather short. I understand if the band purposely keeps it short and sweet to avoid unnecessary damage like what they did on previous two full lengths. The solos are awesome and holy shit, the riff is surprisingly good (but not great) to back up the leads vice versa. Nevertheless, the album closes as the wrath of God comes to an end.

Being a long time fan of Deicide since the 90s, I wanted to give this album a higher rating but I believe there’s still much work to be done. Plus, I wasn’t expecting ‘Legion V.2’ or another ‘Stench…’. This is fact and I have to accept it, and so will you that Deicide while still doing fine in the business, are not going to do anyone any more surprises. In the Minds of Evil has some good moments, but the songs are generally forgettable save for the last two. The absence of multi layered shrieks is a blessing because had Benton decided to employ such techniques, it would make this record a hundred times worse than any LP they put out so far, including the ridiculous ‘In Torment in Hell’. So this album is a good addition for completists like me, but for those who actually have MA or Phd. in extreme metal, you may want to avoid this record at all cost.

Deicide For The New Era - 85%

DarkRecollections69, December 5th, 2013

Deicide. Anyone even remotely familiar with death metal knows the name. They are a band who has forever made their mark in the world of death metal. Their brand of Christ-bashing death metal has sparked much controversy over the years and in their twenty plus year history they have released several records now considered classics, particularly the first four albums, the self titled, "Legion", "Once Upon The Cross", and "Serpents of the Light". Since then Deicide has continually been releasing some fairly decent to good records under the same banner, making some pretty significant changes to their sound throughout this course of time, leaving many fans feeling alienated and disenfranchised with the band.

Now in the year 2013, another new record called "In The Minds Of Evil" was announced. At first upon hearing the news I, like many of you, was not too overly thrilled and didn't really expect much, as they had been sounding more bland and uninspired as of late. The last couple releases "Till Death Do Us Part" and "To Hell With God" hadn't really done much for me. I seen a new song "In The Minds Of Evil" was released and just out of pure Curiosity, I gave it a spin. Upon first listen, I thought it was pretty good and noticed while it wasn't too much different than what I had came to expect, some improvements had surely been made. I listened through the song again and noticed first of all the vocals had greatly improved, as it was clear Benton was putting forth more effort and emphasis on the vocals and lyrics. Instead of sounding much like a barking dog like on most of the newer records, the vocals sound much clearer and he annunciates the words better than he has in a long time.

Musically speaking, there are also some important changes to note. The riffs are catchier and groovier than seen in a long time, giving the music more of an old school Deicide vibe that hasn't really been seen seen since "Serpents of The Light", as evidenced by the main riffs of songs like "Godkill", "Thou Begone", "Beyond Salvation", and the title track. The leads have also improved. "Between the Flesh and the Void" is another highlight with the main riff bringing a Morbid Angel type of vibe. Production wise, it brings more of a "Stench of Redemption" vibe, also a solid album in it's own right. The main thing making this release different from that album or any of the other newer releases though, is more emphasis is put on the vocals and the album contains more groovy riffs like in the early days of the band.

In conclusion, if you are looking for something new or different from this band, you will probably be disappointed. While not being a classic or groundbreaking by any means, "In The Minds Of Evil" is still a good and solid record in it's own right worth a good listen. I would implore those of you with an open mind to give it a fair chance and actually take the time to listen to it without any preconceived notion that nothing this band releases anymore can be worthwhile. If you do this, hopefully you can find this record an enjoyable and entertaining listen like I did.

Some bands just want to watch the world burn - 95%

belegur13, December 1st, 2013

I've had mixed feelings about the band's last few albums after the departure of the Hoffmans. The Stench of Redemption was arguably the best of the bunch, whilst Till Death Do Us Part was not as engaging; To Hell With God was an improvement, though not album of the year material.

In The Minds of Evil however is not only better than any of the albums released in the post-Hoffman era, it also raises a new standard for the band (in my opinion). It's more focused, tighter and just plain meaner than Stench. Plus Glen Benton's vocals sound better here than they have in years, something many no doubt will remark upon. There's very little of the black metal dual vocals, with the ones that do appear no longer sounding like a Dani Filth screech but more old school black, as they should be.

Ever since Kevin Quirion was announced as the (on again/off again) replacement for Ralph Santolla, I had wondered what the band would sound like with his performance and influence. The wait has been worth it, as his compositions are one of the primary reasons this album sounds as good as it does. Not to discount the other band member's contributions, of course.

Songs like "Godkill" and "Between the Flesh and the Void" are prime Deicide, with haunting solos, epic riffs and crushing nastiness that this band has become known for. Benton's lyrics are as blasphemous as ever, but not as vulgar as they have been the last few albums, which allows these songs to make more of an impression. Still, the opening to the title track which references The Dark Knight kept me waiting for him to growl something like "When Heaven is have my permission to die!" Actually, that would have been cool.

A previous reviewer noted this is probably the best Deicide album since Serpents of the Light and I am inclined to agree. Not only that, but I'm making this one of my top albums of this year. Horns up to the band!

Decentcide strikes yet again - 72%

autothrall, November 28th, 2013

As readily accessible as this record is (for the death metal genre, at any rate), it was not one that I initially found a lot of value in. I was drawn immediately to the lead work, which is by far the greatest thing here, but otherwise it took some warming up to what I otherwise found a fairly standard/stock selection of old school Deicide riffing. Loads of tremolo picked passages over the faster beats throughout, and then a selection of chugging progressions that weren't exactly compelling. Now, granted I am not now nor have I ever been the biggest fan of this group...I like a handful of their records, the first two and Stench of the Redemption being the ones I break out the most, but certainly they have their place in the genre's history, and I wasn't too disappointed with their previous disc To Hell With God, which was essentially a slightly modern brutalization of their traditional style. Upon hearing that recent (and excellent) podcast interview with Glen Benton at MetalSucks, I was pretty pumped up to hear the new material due to his claim that it was some of the best they'd ever written...

But don't most musicians say that about each new release? In the Minds of Evil is not exactly their best material, but neither does it trail very far behind. Certainly it eclipses many of their mediocre records with ease, but I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of the fan base are sort of bored at this point, since Deicide does not seem capable of much nuance or progression from release to release, the greatest coming when they put out The Stench of Redemption with its blazing leads and heightened melodic sensibility (though even there, it was largely business as usual). That formula still exists here, particularly with the lead guitars, which I feel comfortable in claiming as the best they've implemented, or at least the most atmospheric, but it's the rest of the riffing that falls a little short, if mainly because I've heard it all before so many times, and there are just too many 'safe bets' in intervals and note choices that fail to generate the level excitement I wanted as the tunes surged into those immaculate solos. I had read somewhere that the lyrics to this were particularly weak, but having read through them I have to disagree...true, they're recapitulating a lot of the same points they've been hammering in since the eponymous debut in 1990, but composition-wise there's plenty enough effort. I mean, if you're looking for Milton-level authorship, you're in the wrong place to begin with.

One area where In the Minds of Evil never really drags behind is in its production, which is modern, beefy and extremely clean. Some diehards of the early 90s might be turned off that it's not that same sort of muffled and flawed Morrisound style they remember with such fondness, but I'm not complaining. Glen's vocals, which continue to focus on the decidedly guttural style rather than the dual imp/grunts on the 'classics', seem like they were very carefully produced, while the riffs have plenty of meat on them rivaled here only by Steve Asheim's effortless mastery of the rolling double bass beats and fits of blasting. Jason Suecof definitely reaffirms his love for getting that great kit sound, and keeping everything clear and in place. A few of the muted tremolo picked harmonies have a nice clinical edge to them that persists into the more effects-heavy solo sequences, but I would say there's a bit of sameness to a lot of the songwriting that doesn't create the most distinct or varied experience (something they've honestly never done). The bass even sounds audible, though he's not usually performing the most intriguing lines that could ever steal focus from the rhythm guitars (par for the course, since he's pulling double duty with the vox). Ultimately, as long as you're not averse to these older bands keeping with 'the times' in the studio, this sounds pretty massive in the speakers, and that's going to be the #1 appeal for a lot of younger fans checking this out. Deicide was never exactly a band chasing a grainy or lo-fi production, so this shouldn't surprise anyone.

In the Minds of Evil could rightly be compared to Legion or Once Upon a Cross, with a few hints of Blessed Are the Sick or The Bleeding, apart from that meatier contemporary studio appeal. It's neither an exemplary or innovative offering, but at least a satisfactory one within its own restraints. Benton and crew seem complacent to the fact that they're an old school death metal band, and they simply seek to hone that craft to perfection time and time again. Similar to the Vader formula, but where records like Welcome to the Morbid Reich, also endowed with killer leads, are ecstatic, passionate and unforgettable, In the Minds of Evil ventures across the finish line into acceptable territory and then collapses, unwilling to stay up all night to celebrate its success. Functional, workmanlike death metal with a lot of chops you've heard before, altered marginally and dressed up with screaming, eloquent excursions higher up the fretboard. Honestly I got more out of this than To Hell With God, but I'm still privately hoping that Deicide will one day release the utter masterpiece it should have required to deserve the status it has achieved. These guys were pretty tight in the beginning, and over the past 3-4 albums they've clearly returned to that level of proficiency and teamwork with the newer members...but there's still not an album in their catalog to effect me as profoundly as a Left Hand Path, Realm of Chaos or Consuming Impulse. That said, the effort placed in records like this one show me that COULD happen, so I can't cross hope off the list just yet.


Detractors be saved! - 93%

enigmatech, November 27th, 2013

If you ask me, while I enjoyed some of the post-Hoffman's' material, there was always something missing: it never really sounded like Deicide. It felt more like a less-blasty Vital Remains to me, and other than Glen Benton's blasphemous lyrics (which slowly started to suck over the last few albums), contained very little that resembled the band's "trademark sound" from their golden-era. That, mixed in with lazy songwriting, bad production, and god-awful guitar leads made Deicide's last album "To Hell with God", a very disappointing album (but not terrible. In essence, it was Deicide's "World Painted Blood"), aside from the idea that Jack Owen was finally writing some material. So after that album, I told myself that I would give Deicide one more shot to reclaim their throne, and if they failed, I probably would stop following their music.

Well, it turns out that I could not possibly have picked a better time to say that, because "To Hell with God"'s follow-up is easily the best album the band has released since, "Serpents of the Light", and possibly even "Legion"! The band sounds more energetic and excited than they have in years, which lends the album a youthful atmosphere which reaches all the way back to the band's self-titled debut! Which is interesting, because this album not only revives the spirit and energy of the band's classic work, but also the overall sound. That "trademark Deicide sound" I was just talking about? It's fucking back. This album is extremely old-school, bringing both the energy and speed of "Deicide" with the irregular song-structures and ferocity of "Legion", all wrapped up in a tortilla of brutality which sounds unlike anything Deicide has ever attempted before. We can thank Kevin Quirion for this...his song-writing is truly amazing, and he delivers some of the most crushing riffs Deicide has ever delivered (the closing number, "End the Wrath of God", is a good example here), but the most notable aspect of his addition to the band are the fucking solos. His lead playing contains all the soul and passion that Ralph Santolla lacked (and baby, that is a lot!). While still melodic in nature, the solos fit the music a lot better and refrain from vomiting all over the music like a drunken buffoon with no clue what he is ruining (*cough*Ralph Santolla in Obituary*cough*). Jack Owen also does a good job, helping with Quirion on "Godkill" (one of the best songs on the disc), and creating the death metal anthem that is "Beyond Salvation" (as well as numerous others). Some of his riffs on the previous album brought to mind Cannibal Corpse...the same is not true for this album. The riffs here sound like pure Deicide, straight of the cryogenic-chamber.

Glen Benton's vocals continue where he left off from "To Hell with God" (once again, he uses his old-school vocal style rather than the guttural stuff of past albums), but he takes it a step further: Deicide's infamous over-dubbed vocals are almost completely abandoned, with only one or two screams on the entire album, and with Glen putting alot more focus and passion into his growls. I am blown away by his voice on this album...I liked what he did on the last album, but his vocals here are sharper, meaner, and more powerful than they have been in years. Lyrically, he has also stepped up the game a bit: expecting Deicide to stop singing about how much Jesus sucks is pretty ridiculous...but nonetheless there are a handful of songs on this album which lower the Satanic and Anti-Christian overtones somewhat, in favor of more personal and introverted themes which only vaguely deal with the concept of Satanism ("Between the Flesh and the Void" seems to be inspired by Glen's mother passing away). The more conventional Deicide stuff, however, where Glen rants about his hatred for God and Jesus Christ, he delivers with more passion and conviction than he has in years. Steve Asheim delivers a ridiculous drum performance as usual, this time reviving the "Lombardo beat" which he frequently used on 90's albums (imagine a standard rock beat with a snare-hit on two, rather than the standard four...that kind of describes what I mean). Personally, this is one of my favorite Asheim feels very natural to me, and while the music is not incredibly technical, that doesn't stop him from going all-out in some of these songs.

I could go on and on, but I will simply say that any fan of Deicide should check this album out. This is the true Deicide sound, and one of my favorite albums that the band has ever released.