Greek death metallers Gravewards made an intense impression with their 2017 demo Subconscious Lobotomy. You can read our review of that record here. That independently-released 4-track tape was the kind of death metal rarely heard in recent years, having the spirit of the original bands but not married to any particular influence or scene.
Now their debut full-length Ruinous Ensoulment is here, and it delivers thoroughly on the promise and the mission statement of their demo. Seven bludgeoning tracks and one intro deep, it will be released on the 27th July 2018 via Unspeakable Axe Records.
When we reviewed Subconscious Lobotomy in June 2017 we referred to the demo as “raw sounding death metal but with a slight twist on thrash. It’s fast, aggressive & has a ‘take no prisoners’ approach”.
Well, that still rings true here.
A warning alarm intro makes it clear that something is about to happen. That something is Gravewards and their destructive maelstrom of death/thrash metal music. Be warned, you might not make it out of this one alive.
The demonic shouting vocals, the sharpened riffing and the hammer hitting nail into your brain level of drumming and bass makes Ruinous Ensoulment a treat for fans of the more extreme side of metal. That being said, Gravewards are a little bit different then your run of the mill heavy band.
Thanks to the clever position of the middle ground between thrash and death; Worn in Denial – Omega Syndrome, Souls Twisted Beyond Recognition and Crypt Spawned Psychosis comes screaming out of the gates with way more rhythm and dare I say, a little bit of catchiness, to them.
Sacrilege, right? You’re an extreme metal band so you must be an incomprehensible mess!? Well, fuck that says Gravewards.
We’re all better off for it as the punishing and unrelenting brutality of the album hammers away at the mind, body and soul. There is no escaping the force of Gravewards as they go for the kill on the excellent Devoid of Life.
It’s fantastic to see the excellent work on the demo wasn’t a fluke. These guys have something special about them.
Gravewards – Ruinous Ensoulment Full Track Listing:
2. Worn In Denial – Omega Syndrome
3. Souls Twisted Beyond Recognition
4. Crypt Spawned Psychosis
5. Deconstruction Of Logic
6. Thresholds Of Lunacy
7. Abyssal Soul Devourment
8. Devoid Of Life
Gravewards - Ruinous Ensoulment (Unspeakable Axe Records)
The Final Score - 9/10