Fleshgod Apocalypse are a symphonic death metal band from Italy formed in 2007 & King is their 4th full release.
Marche Royale’s brief 2 minute intro breathes life into a record that is one of the most intriguing albums I’ve heard in a while. Giving off a march to war vibe that could have been ripped from an epic movie soundtrack it builds & builds into the second track, In Aeternum.
The symphonic elements soften to allow some intense death metal vocals to take centre stage. The mix is incredible backed up by some killer riffs & earth-shattering drumming. The vocal change during the soaring chorus will make the hairs stand up on your neck, it’s very impressive. The guitar solo at the end is just the icing on the cake of a fantastic opening song.
Another band that combines symphonic elements with death metal might not seem that exciting at first, but Fleshgod Apocalypse are easily one of the best within this genre. The symphony takes a backseat to the heaviness used to enhance darker & brooding sections. It’s there & easy to pick out but doesn’t dominate over the excellent guitar work.
It’s easy for an album filled with symphonic death metal songs to get stale quickly & Fleshgod Apocalypse avoid this by mixing up their style of songs as it goes on. The jaunty intro of The Fool is deceiving as it is one of the heavier tracks on the entire album. It also has one of the best guitar solos throughout.
You’re listening to a story, a composition that is driven primarily by guitars & assisted by opera solos & a primarily string based orchestra. It’s an experience that feels more cohesive the more you listen to it.
Paramour (Die Leidenschaft Bringt Leiden) gives you chance to digest what you’ve heard so far. Opera vocals accompanied by just a piano, it’s soft & easy to listen to breaking up the album nicely but also showing that the band have more to offer.
With so much going on its noticeable that the band even delve into power metal at times. Most obviously on the track And the Vulture Beholds with a chorus that just lifts you from within. One of the best tracks on the entire album showcasing everything about the album in a glorious 5 minute segment. This is the song you’ll want to play to entice others to listen to album.
The album’s penultimate song, a 7 minute + epic called Syphilis & final piano only piece of music, King bookend the album perfectly. Ending as it begun, with a sense of accomplishment as the story has been told.
King is an incredible album & one I thoroughly recommend any fan of symphonic death metal listen too. It’s got such depth & on multiple listens you’ll really appreciate the writing abilities of the band.
Full Track List:
1. Marche Royale
2. In Aeternum
3. Healing Through War
4. The Fool
5. Cold as Perfection
7. Paramour (Die Leidenschaft Bringt Leiden)
8. And the Vulture Beholds
10. A Million Deaths
Fleshgod Apocalypse - King (Nuclear Blast)
The Final Score - 9/10
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