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Brimming with bilious...boredom? - 70%

MetalDeity, September 15th, 2013

Weapon is one of those entities that not only decide to carry the beacon of proud Canadian tradition of blackened death metal, but adorn and embellish it with nuances and details of their own, to both create a nostalgic memorabilia to commemorate the genre's forefathers (despite Blasphemy still being "active"), and refurbish it to their own liking. Or at least they used to be, because their previous elements of Middle Eastern and Indian-inspired riffing and songwrting, as well as exotic instrumentation (sitar,in particular) seem to be lost on this release, with only thing remaining being the powerful and passionate product of said genre, albeit a more conventional, by-the-numbers one.

Weapon have steered a lot on this release, with songs being of less epic lengthh and composition, with fewer mood and atmosphere transitions, and more prone to following the dreaded verse-chorus-verse structure ("Vanguards of the morning star", for instance). Needless to say, melodies are still catchy, as they haven't lost all their prowess and aptitude, just strayed from the more exotic take on the genre. And while at times, they do field minimum experimentation and flirting with outside influences ("Liber Lilith" with it's choral shouting), the spectacular songwriting only reveals itself in glimpses and brief moments of vision and creativity. Aside from that we are left with a feel of expectation and hope, but and consecutively with the underwhelming and sour feel of their return to more rote collage of various components of said medium.

That said, "Embers and revelations" is far from a bad release, as it deserves more then a single spin to fully immerse into,but after you have caught all the subtleties and facets, you feel as they have rushed to release an unfinished and more commercial sounding admixture of death and black metal, with several spins and shifts in structure redolent of 80s heavy and thrash notables. Since competent and devoted black/death is hard to come by, with most extreme metal musicians opting for one out of two, this may sate the grating feel of scarceness, but is far from moving any boundaries and breaching any frontiers. 7/10