Goatwhore - Blood For The Master
Knowing Goatwhore are fifteen years and five albums into their career belies their underground ranking in the metal world. Their New Orleans blackened death metal has all the right attributes, sitting proudly on a cold black throne and violently preaching lyrics drowned in blasphemy. Backed by aggressive blast beats and freakishly extreme riffs, it’s an oddity that such a band haven’t graduated to the same levels as some of their peers – Behemoth, Anaal Nathrakh and Amon Amarth to name a few.
The blasphemous artwork of Blood For The Master is the first obvious talking point. Judging by its imagery of crucifixion, skulls, and blood, a loping malevolence is to be expected. This is true, but sadly not of the entire album. ‘Collapse in Eternal Worth’ is what Goatwhore do best: raspy, wretched vocals, lashings of bestial thrash and relentless double-kick. This expertise is notably mimicked in ‘Embodiment of this Bitter Choas’ and ‘Parasitic Scriptures of the Sacred Word,’ both of which also harbour distinctive solos. The album’s animus fades with the punk-rock stench of ‘When Steel and Bone Meet,’ a mediocre attempt at deviating from the band’s norm. It is seemingly possible that Goatwhore haven’t reached higher levels since they fail to execute any deviation with conviction. That, and as this current album attests, their abrasive edge gets somewhat stale with repetition.