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Winter Kills
September 2013
Released: 2013, Napalm Records
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: UK Team

The Devildriver boys have shared with us their 6th album to hit the metal scene, 'Winter Kills'. Since they introduced their first album 'Self Titled' back in 2003 they have had a huge impact on the metal world, bringing us tracks such as ' Clouds over Californa' and 'I could care less'.

Hailing from California, the band have travelled the world over showcasing their talent in festivals and performances and are well known for having some of the most insane mosh pits.Winter Kills is the band's first album since they signed to new label Napalm Records and officially signed on Chris Towning as their new permanent bassist.

The album opens up with track one 'Oath of the Abyss' which catches my attention straight away, as they have introduced a new and exciting sound. 'Dez Fafara' brings the track alive with his unique roar vocals that are harder and more powerful than ever before. You are taken to another world with this track, transported to a place of raw energy and passion.

There are more break downs in this song, more intense and hard hitting than anything DD have done before. They have introduced something completely different, something unique, which blends well with the song. The band know their fans, know how to get their blood pumping and they bring the track back up with harder beats and shredding guitar solos. The whole track makes you want to pump your fist in the air and stay in the private world they've created with their music.

'Ruthless' has a whole new beat and rhythm to it, creating a different feel from the previous track. It starts off slow, with a hard heavy bass entwined with a steady rhythm of guitar. They slowly build up the pace making it faster and harder as the song continues. Dez Fafara brings the song up to a whole different level with the sounds of his loud, heart pumping roar opening up this song, letting you know that this track is going to be heavy as fuck. The rest of the band members pick up the pace to play solidly with the vocals, blending together seamlessly. This song is more intense, more focused and unbridled; proving that they are here to play faster, louder, and harder than ever before.

'The Appetite', is - in my opinion - one of the best on the album, it has superb shredding riffs and crazy drum beats that show off the band's skills. This track reminds me of one of their most famous tracks Clouds Over California; it has a similar drum beat. The similarities between this album and their older stuff is a fantastic mix between happy nostalgia and something new and refreshing, up to date with the current tastes of metal fans. The Appetite is definitely going to be a hit. A new track that will be sung from the lungs of DD fans all over the world.

Following up from 'The Appetite' we have another kick ass track 'Gutted'. This song smacks you in the face with repetitive hard beat, which is enhanced as soon as you hear the vocals kick in with a loud powerful growl. This track has more of a tune going on with the guitar unlike the other songs on the album and although this is hard hitting song, there is still a sense of calmness within it that makes you want to close your eyes and just listen.

The next few tracks do not disappoint; you are on the edge of your seat wishing that your speakers would go up louder, because they just don't give you the full impact of how kick ass this album really is. 'Caring overkills' is the one track on this album that shows off some real emotion within the chorus. It's practically tangible and packs such a punch. It's fantastic. Definitely a favourite of mine.

As the album comes to a close I am surprised to hear a familiar track that I have heard many times before. 'Sail' is originally done by 'Awolnation' and Devil Driver give it a whole different meaning, putting their own unique spin to the track. It's a good cover, but not what I expected. They have created a good beat and sound for the track and it's definitely worth a listen, but I feel they've taken too much away from the original.

Overall, this is 100% worth a listen. The whole album packs a punch and showcases the entire band's talent. They have outdone themselves with this album. Not only is there raw emotion in the tracks, something hard hitting and refreshing, it has still got that Devil Driver spin on it that everyone loves.

Review by Becky Brown
Track Listing

1. Oath of the Abyss
2. Ruthless
3. Desperate Times
4. Winter Kills
5. The Appetite
6. Gutted
7. Curses And Epitaphs
8. Carings Overkill
9. Haunting Refrain
10. Tripping Over Tombstones
11. Sail


Dez Fafara–lead vocals
Jeff Kendrick -guitar
John Boecklin –drums
Mike Spreitzer– guitar
Chris Towning - bass

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