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Burial Ritual
Tower Of Silence
October 2009
Released: 2009, Selt Released
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Erich

Milwaukee, Wisconsin produces more than just beer, apparently. Burial Ritual is a throwback to the heyday of death metal, when inhuman drum tempos, bowel grinding vocals spewed forth vitriol, and power chords mixed with tremolo notes were the order of the day. The band came together in 2005 and released an EP in 2007 titled LAST RITES. The album was impressive, but it was moving in a far more retro-direction than most death metal. The follow up to the debut, TOWER OF SILENCE, firmly plants the band in retro-territory and makes no apologies for it.



TOWER OF SILENCE takes a bare bones approach to death metal. There are no convoluted time changes, note dense masturbation, or progressive leanings. The drums, as expected, move at a breakneck pace quite impressively and throat man Chris Brooks has the vintage style of cookie monster vocals down to a science. The band also tries to mix things up a little and occasionally throws in some variety, such as the sinister keyboard intro to lead-off track “Tower Of Silence” which quickly transitions into a doubled bass race to the finish. The band’s Myspace page explains that the songs are about death, burial, and the occult. Without a lyric sheet, I could not tell, but it sure sounds like those are the lyrical topics. Burial Ritual combines elements of thrash and black metal into their sound, which prevents the album from coming across as completely retro death metal. In keeping with most respectable death metal, there is a track calculated to offend called “Fantasy of Rape”. The closing track titled “The Gathering Storm” is a tight instrumental that offers a brief respite from the unrelenting brutality of the previous 7 tracks.



There are tons of bands out there playing death metal, so the challenge facing Burial Ritual is to convince people that the early days of death metal were the genre’s golden age. The playing on this album is dedicated and concerted aggression. You will not find any solos or notes further up the neck of the guitar; this is all down in the lower registers. Fans of Deicide, Cannibal Corpse, and other stalwarts of the genre will find much to like on TOWER OF SILENCE. With major label backing, Burial Ritual could make an impression on a genre that has clearly lost its way.
Track Listing

1 Tower of Silence
2 Blood Feud
3 Sectarian Death Squad
4 Cannibalistic Tendencies
5 Atop the Funeral Pyre
6 Benedict's Last Breath
7 Fantasy of Rape
8 The Gathering Storm

Lineup

XVII-Guitar and Backing Vocals
Chris Brooks-Lead Vocal
Pete-Drums
Oso-Bass

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Previous review: » Burial Ritual - Exterminating The Masses





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