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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Immortal Dominion

Awakening - The Revelation

Review by Greg Olma

Immortal Dominion have been around since 1992 but this is the first time I have crossed paths with them.  This new CD Awakening - The Revelation should be in any extreme metal fan's collection. The tunes are heavy (yet retain a bit of melody), catchy, and most of all, brutal.  Sure, there are a lot of bands peddling this type of metal but what sets these guys apart is the songs.  As I mentioned earlier, they are heavy but they are built around the solid riffing of Ray Smith and Brian Villers.  They took that Black Sabbath blueprint and cranked it up to 10 (or 11 for you Spinal Tap fans).  Add to that a solid foundation provided by Ben Huntwork and Gabe Romero and what you have is a recipe for a quality record.  I hope these guys make it with this CD because it is too good to be ignored.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Punishment
The whole experience starts off in brutal fashion.  There is no build-up, it just jumps straight to the heart with heavy riffing and speed drumming.  Throughout the tune, the band slips into some great thrashy riffing but it is brutal from start to finish.
Will To Survive
This is a bit of a slow down from the first track but it is still heavy.  This cut has more of a newer metal sound as opposed to a brutal death metal style.
Eat Your Flesh
With a title like that, you certainly weren't going to get a ballad.  The guys kick you in the teeth with this fast piece of metal.  The playing is solid and chalks up another one in the winner column.
Sold My Soul
There is some great Black Sabbath riffing going on here.  This might just be the best moment on the CD.  The chorus has less death metal growling and it helps to mix up the vocal styles a little since most of the record is more brutal.
World
I don't think it can get much heavier than this.  The drumming by Huntwork is amazing.  He changes tempo but still keeps it so clean that there isn't a beat out of place.
Something To Change
The intro to this track is what I imagine the Muzak in Hell sounds like.  The tune itself is more Sabbath-ish riffing with Slayer elements thrown in.
Fear Free
Here is another brutal cut but it doesn't seem to have the same purpose as the other tracks.  It's not bad but there is much better material on this record.
Not Good
This song has kind of an upbeat vibe to it.  Vocally and lyrically it stays on course with the rest of the album but musically it is not as doomy as the rest of the tracks.
Awakening
I like the stop/start intro here.  It adds a nice respite from the rest of this brutal disc.  The remainder of the tune is just another crusher with a cool retro sounding guitar solo.
Christian Witchcraft
This tune takes all of the best elements from thrash and extreme metal and blends it into a great track.  It starts off with some eerie sounds and builds into a frantic middle section before sliding back into a killer groove of heavy riffing.
Blasphemy
There is not much here except some one dimensional riffing and speed drumming.  It is the shortest track, clocking in at less than 2 minutes, and it would have been a good part of a longer song but it falls flat on its own.
Untouchable
The guys kick back with a thrasher that has a nice slow bridge in the middle.  The band has definitely mastered the art of heavy at whatever speed or tempo the music is in.
Shallow In The Vatican Darkness
Just when I thought I was thrown a curve ball (the intro sounds like something the Scorpions would put out), the track goes back to familiar territory with some solid extreme metal.

The Other Side Of Pain
This is the longest song on the CD and it is a weird piece.  Don't get me wrong, it is good but it starts off as a ballad but they thrown in the brutal metal that is present throughout the disc. It's a good tune but just a little different from the other material on offer.
 
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