EP Review: Archaic Decapitator – The Apothecary (Self Released)

The Apothecary EP is the latest 5-song effort from Connecticut-based Progressive Melodic Death Metal group, Archaic Decapitator. It is the group’s first release with new rhythm guitarist Chris Ridley and new drummer Gary Marotta of seasoned progressive death metal act Xenosis and sees release on April 19th. The Apothecary is the bands follow up to their well-received 2016 EP, Light of a Different Sun.

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Archaic Decapitator comments on the release of The Apothecary:

“Expanding on the melodic approach of the previous EP. This release is slightly shorter than the previous one but contains much more substance and emotion. With the addition of Xenosis drummer Gary to the group, a significant amount of feeling is supplied through his drumming which has brought even more color to the record. Conceptually, this album touches upon processes of acceptance and healing. It touches upon what it may be like to be an empath and take on the troubles of others at the expense of one’s own vitality, as well as how much can an individual ultimately absorb before succumbing burden.”

A vicious and blistering five track EP (4 plus an intro), this EP is a technical masterpiece that leaves you begging for more. It’s not a one-time listen, it requires thought and dissemination.

The mention of emotion in the bands comments above is certainly enticing and they deliver on that promise as Skyward gets underway. An emotive melody wrapped around what is inhuman death metal marks this track and Archaic Decapitator as something special within the melodic metal world.

A very strong start, Cruelty of the Host Star looks to continue that with a bit more force, particularly in the drums. A hyper-tempo allows the guitars to let loose to the benefit of all. It’s a short track, all about power.

Whereas Diminishing Returns is longer and more focused on a bleaker sound. It’s not lacking in pressure (those drums) however it does lay out some spoken-word style vocals and the guitar rhythm has a much darker edge. Bloody great though.

The title track then closes things out with unrepentant fury, sharp as nails riffing and a continuation of the incredible drum performance. Awesome stuff but it’s the spacey/other-worldly melody that picks up in the latter half that really stands out.

It’s a really impressive EP, one that leaves you with the feeling of disappointment because it’s over.

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Archaic Decapitator – The Apothecary Full Track Listing:

1. Circadian Promise
2. Skyward
3. Cruelty of the Host Star
4. Diminishing Returns
5. The Apothecary



The EP is available to order via Bandcamp. More information can be found by checking out Archaic Decapitator’s Facebook, Instagram and YouTube Channel.

Archaic Decapitator - The Apothecary (Self Released)
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