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Naked, Grey Human Torch - 87%

Mailman__, September 11th, 2018

Another album, another lineup. That seems to be Monstrosity's mentality because for their fifth album, "Spiritual Apocalypse," both guitarists were replaced by Mark English, and Jason Avery was replaced by Mike Hrubovcak. English previously wrote and performed a guitar solo for track seven on Monstrosity's previous album, 'Rise to Power." With the new lineup comes their new sound: fairly straightforward death metal.

Despite taking a normal, modern death metal route, there is still technicality to Monstrosity's sound. In fact, this album is basically a combination of "Imperial Doom" and "In Dark Purity." It has the death metal vibe of their debut along with the some riffing style of their 1999 album. Along with this, they threw in a modern death metal sound, and actually pulled it off better than modern death metal bands. Shocker.

Musically, this album is surprisingly great. I'm not a fan of modern death metal unless it's technical death metal. I can tolerate some modern brutal death metal, but not much. But modern death metal without any technical or brutal influence? That's not for me. This album may have technicality, but there is also originality. In other words, if this were just a modern death metal album without the technicality, I might still enjoy it. Songs like "Apostles of the Endless Night," "The Bloodline Horror," and "Remnants of Divination" remind me why I like this band so much. They have these amazing flares of energy and creativity, each one a melting pot of ideas that are all perfectly executed. And the best part is they're all spread out on the album, making it balanced.

However good the riffs on these tracks are, some songs on this album are lacking in this area. Tracks like "Firestorm" and "Within Divisions of Darkness," while having good riffs, lack what makes every other song on here so great. In conclusion, they sound like filler. They are not bad songs by any means, but they do not impress.

The solos are better on this album than any Monstrosity album before this. They're fast and shreddy while still showing emotion and feeling. They aren't just there because they have to be, and they're not there to show off. They're there to give the songs flavor and depth, and that's exactly what they do.

"Spiritual Apocalypse" is a good return for Monstrosity. It was another comeback album for them, and it was much better than anyone expected. This album has stellar production, great musicianship, and cool album artwork, something that this band clearly forgot the existence of since "Imperial Doom." All jokes aside, Monstrosity continue to release good music, even in the early 2000s when everything in music other than brutal and technical death metal was pretty much garbage.

Overall Rating: 87%

Originally written for themetalvoid.wordpress.com