Benediction - Killing Music

Veterans Benediction had been away from the studios during seven long years, however when hearing the new work “Killing Music” I get the impression that the Birmingham quintet haven’t forgot how to write a straightforward and brutal theme in a true old-school Death-Metal style. It’s as if it only passed a mere year from their sixth record “Organized Chaos” from 2001 since it sounds like Benediction possess some kind of immunity or vaccine against the trends of the last few years.
The sound of “Killing Music” is direct and brutal, a mixture of old Grind, Death-Metal, Crust, Punk and why not include Hardcore, after all drummer Neil Hutton is a former member Stampin’ Ground and the influence of the style is evident on certain moments of the album. The absence of guitar leads is one of the characteristics of the new record, (well the cover of Broken Bones “Seeing Through My Eyes” is the only exception) guitarists Darren Brookes and Peter Rew prefer to concentrate their efforts on catchy, fast and intense riffs sounding like a fierce attack from the artillery of the British Army.
The remaining members don’t stay behind in terms of delivery and intensity either, the rhythmic section featuring bass player Frank Healy and the already mentioned Neil Hutton is simply solid and devastating whereas vocalist Dave Hunt of Anaal Nathrakh grunts and growls like a furious demon, hear the theme “The Grey Man” to testify such immense brutality yourselves. Or then, hear the track “Controlopolis”, he sounds like Barney Greenway on the verge of a fury attack.
“Killing Music” has its flaws, the fact that it last for 45 minutes looks somehow exaggerated since there’s little variation between the songs and the words “annoyance” and “boredom” tend to spring to mind after the eight theme.
Nevertheless, with almost 20 years of career behind them, the Brits don’t demonstrate any signs of fatigue or discourage and “Killing Music” is a good example of how to write a brutal and direct Death-Metal work without sounding out of its expiring date.

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