Reviewed: October 2016
Released: 2016, Repulsive Echo
Malevolent Creation has been around for nearly 30 years and they have always crushed it, their albums are consistently brutal and you know exactly what you are getting when you buy one. Of course, when you have 12 albums some are going to be better than others. Every deathmetaller knows THE TEN COMMANDMENTS and RETRIBUTION are Malevolent’s two best (people argue over which is #1 all the time!) but what comes next in terms of greatness? I’ll really dig last year’s DEAD MAN’S PATH, after that my next favorite is 2000’s ENVENOMED, which the good folks at Repulsive Echo have reissued with new artwork and bonus tracks. Let’s explore this killer!
The lineup for ENVENOMED is mostly classic members (Brett Hoffman on vocals, Phil Fasciana on guitar, Rob Barrett (Cannibal Corpse) on guitar) with blast beat demon Dave Culross on drums and Gordon Simms on bass. Dave and Gordon have appeared on many Malevolent Creation albums (5 for Dave, 4 for Gordon) and various live recordings. What I’m saying is, this was a great lineup!
Things start off with live staple “Homicidal Rant” and the album never lets up! Vocalist Brett Hoffman is in fine feral form here, delivering savage growls and his unique elongated screams / roars that no other human being is capable of doing. For examples of this, check out his work in “Night of the Long Knives” (this is NOT a cover of the AC/DC tune folks!), “Halved” (DEATH IS HALF OF LLLLLLLIIIIIIIIFFFFFEEE!), “Bloodline Severed”, and the title track. Kyle Simmons also provides some sick backing vocals on “Kill Zone” (chorus is great!), and “Pursuit Revised”. Simmons would become the lead vocalist for the next two Malevolent albums. The drumming by Dave Culross is relentless and punishing, the guy is a fucking blast beat machine who can also handle mid-tempo and fills with ease. Guitar work on the album is a blistering assault of riffs with an occasional solo. I dig the breakdown and following solo during “Conflict”. There are no weak tracks on the album, the only downside is that the album does get a little redundant after a while. Although, if you are looking for a brass knuckle punch in the face to wake you the fuck up, this is your album! Bonus tracks are the same that were provided with EVENOMED II (re-issue from 2002), a great cover of Dark Angel’s “Perish in Flames” and two ass kickers “Epileptic Seizure” and “Confirmed Kill”.
Artwork is all new and I think it is an improvement over the original. Cover has an effigy / death mask of a person inside a spider egg sac with venomous spiders all around. CD is a digipack that contains a booklet with lyrics and a history of this great band.
If you do not own a copy of ENVENOMED, this is a mandatory purchase for all fans of extreme metal. If you already have it but want the bonus tracks and cool new artwork this is a worthy purchase. Act fast, it is limited to 500 copies! YOU’RE NOW ENVENOMED!
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