Album Review: Existentialist – The Heretic (Seek and Strike Records)

Essex-based, blackened death metal outfit Existentialist will release their new album ‘The Heretic’, on the 28th of April via US label Seek and Strike.

Following in the footsteps of the likes of Lorna Shore with a theatrical and cinematic addition to their deathcore savagery, Existentialist are here to leave some bruises.

The Heretic is a statement making album, and there’s no more obvious intent than the combination of dark symphonies and brutal heaviness of the opening track Shrouded in Darkness. You don’t need to search around for your ass, Existentialist have just handed it to you with this opener.

The manic heaviness and stupendously lavish soundscape continue into The Zealots Demise. Existentialist unleashing hell here, and it’s blazing hot. A fast, furious, and feral effort with grand symphonic layers. Followed then by the hyper intensity and guttural horror of Churchburner. No matter how heavy it seems Existentialist have gotten, they always find a way to go that little bit further. No amount of uber-elaborate symphonic tone switches can change that, and this track has some big ones.

One of the UK’s best extreme vocalists then guests on Embers Upon Calvary. It’s only the Slam King himself, Jason Evans of Ingested. Arriving to give Existentialist a wilder and more aggressive boost, as if they needed any help in sounding stupidly dangerous.

Building on the strong soundscape they have already crafted; Existentialist continue their impressive rise to deathcore prominence with the twinkly melodies and guttural horror of Carrions for Crows. Before going for the teeth-smashing and bone-breaking approach with the massive meatiness of The Eternity Gate and the bombastic sound of The Sundering. If you weren’t already aware that Existentialist don’t just trickle the cinematic symphonic stuff, but rather lather it on, you will be after this.

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Sometimes a tad too much? Nah, f**k that, here’s even more with Usurper and just to push the limits even more, here’s the 8+ minute finale of The Abyssal Embrace. A brash finale that sees Existentialist letting their imagination run wild when it comes to dramatic atmosphere, melodic depth, and heavy detail. It is a huge final track, and not just because of the length.

The Heretic looks to be the turning point in Existentialist’s musical career as it is sure to turn the heads of deathcore fans around the world.

Existentialist – The Heretic Track Listing:

1. Shrouded In Darkness
2. The Zealots Demise
3. Churchburner
4. Embers Upon Calvary (Feat. Jason Evans of Ingested)
5. Carrion for Crows
6. The Eternity Gate
7. The Sundering
8. Usurper
9. The Abyssal Embrace


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  • Carl Fisher

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Existentialist - The Heretic (Seek and Strike Records)
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