Pathology – Reborn to Kill

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Pathology – Reborn to Kill
Reviewed: October, 2019
Released: 2019, Pavement Entertainment
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz

This, THIS is what the world needs from a new Pathology record. 2017’s self-titled opus was a ham handed slam-a-thon that missed the mark on everything that made the San Diego death squad so effective. But with a new label, a new record and an almost entirely new lineup, Pathology are poised to once again properly decimate your ear holes.

Playing off of the album’s title, REBORN TO KILL plays out almost as a reboot for Pathology. Founding member Dave Astor is the lone holdout from previous records, but he’s assembled an incredible new roster of musicians that helps to push the band’s signature technical brutality to stratospheric levels. Much of the album’s success can be credited to new guitarist Dan Richardson; the guy is a beast and comes equipped with a bountiful array of riffs. “Pit of Bones” has almost a thrash foundation to it, while “Crematorium Flames” has an early At the Gates vibe to it. But even more straightforward death metal anthems like “Forced Regression” and “The Driud’s Gavel” offer more structural nuance than much of the band’s recent materials. And – the dude can shred. The lead run in the middle of “The Beast Within” comes totally out of left field, as does the instrumental interlude “Empathy Ends.”

New vocalist Obie Flett is REBORN TO KILL’s other saving grace. No disrespect to his predecessor Matti Way, but Flett’s growl has comparatively more versatility while still delivering ultra-guttural frequencies. But by avoiding the trappings of pig squeals and mic cupped garbled grunts in favor of a more old school Chris Barnes/Frank Mullen bark, Flett’s vocals provide an equally dangerous counterbalance to the album’s musical ambitions.

Given my disappointment with the last Pathology disc, I had zero expectations with RETURN TO KILL. But man, talk about a recovery. With lucky album #10, Pathology have finally delivered a record that captures the most brutal moments of their past with a technical evolution that hopefully hints more towards what their future holds.


Track List:
1. Hieroglyphs on Cement Walls
2. Forced Regression
3. The Beast Within
4. Frothing at the Mouth
5. Empathy Ends
6. Dragged into the Cave
7. Pit of Bones
8. The Druids Gavel
9. Crematorium Flames
10. Stone Axe Dismemberment
11. Predation
12. Celestial Condemnation

Dave Astor – Drums
Obie Flett – Vocals
Ricky Jackson – Bass
Dan Richardson – Guitars


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