Pathology – The Everlasting Plague
Reviewed: December 2021
Released: 2021, Nuclear Blast
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz
Can we take a moment to appreciate how good Pathology has been lately?
2019’s REBORN TO KILL was a necessary rebound from its knuckle dragging eponymous predecessor, but still managed to breathe some fresh life into the beast at the same time. And their just released follow up (and first for Nuclear Blast) THE EVERLASTING PLAGUE carries that mission forward with a satchel full of breakdowns and slick riffs.
At their best, Pathology walks the fine line between crack your skull death metal brutality and melodically infused tech death explorations. THE EVERLASTING PLAGUE exemplifies that balance with 12 new virulent strains that are sure to infect your senses. “A Pound of Flesh” stuns out of the gate with its sweep runs and the kind of deliberately chunked rhythms that wouldn’t sound out of place on an At the Gates record. “Corrosive Cranial Affliction” follows a similar blueprint while the likes of “Procession of Mangled Humans” and “Submerged in Eviscerated Carnage” lean on more spastic riff structures and frenzied time signatures. And then you have some good ol’ fashioned, heads down, no frills death metal jams like “Diseased Morality” and “Dirge for the Infected (that guitar solo at the end is beyond sick)”, because sometimes heavy just needs to be heavy.
And there are a remarkable amount of riffs and arrangements packed into each of the 12 tunes, ensuring that the procession never deviates from maximum intensity. Vocalist Obie Flett makes his second consecutive appearance on a Pathology record (kind of a milestone in this camp) and sounds like an absolute monster. With a dry, borderline howling style of vocals, he adds an additional layer of character to an already complex body of instrumentation.
Pathology have come a long way since their SURGICALLY HACKED debut and THE EVERLASTING PLAGUE is evidence that even the most brutal of bands can evolve without losing their edge. Front to back, THE EVERLASTING PLAGUE is some of Pathology’s strongest material to date and in general is a top notch collection of death metal tunes. Highly recommended for even passive fans of the genre, don’t sleep on this one.