Vengeance Rising - Once Dead

01. Warfare
02. Can't Get Out
03. Cut Into Pieces
04. Frontal Lobotomy
05. Herod's Violent Death
06. The Whipping Post
07. Arise
08. Space Truckin' [Deep Purple cover]
09. Out Of The Will
10. The Wrath To Come
11. Into The Abyss
12. Among The Dead
13. Interruption

Let's face it, unless you actively pursue the sub-genre of Christian metal, it's not exactly something that frequently produces large amounts of quality material. It's almost as if there is some unspoken rule that just because your belief system prevents you from kicking ass, your music shouldn't either. It seems any bands that make much of a serious impression on the masses are incredibly safe and predictable...then again, it's arguable that applies to metal in general and not just this sub-group.

But alas, here's something that actually kinda kicks ass, all ideologies aside. It's a mostly straight forward thrash sound, somewhere along the lines of Sodom or Slayer, with some mostly unique harsh vocals that could easily be compared to Martin Van Drunen of Hail Of Bullets & Asphyx fame. Occasionally there will be a not-so-out-of-place out of place lead or solo that really throws a wrench into the whole predictability of Once Dead, but otherwise it's simple but solid.

Despite Vengeance Rising creating something with a truly aggressive thrash appeal, the whole thing becomes predictable by the end because of the formulaic tendencies they fall into. Every song seems to follow the same pattern; thrash chops/verses - shout out the name of the song as your chorus a few times - then more chops - then maybe a solo - then shout out the song name a few times again. Once Dead could have easily been cut down to a 5 song EP without losing any enjoyability. Most super aggressive albums like these work better as short bursts (Slayer's 29 minute masterpiece Reign In Blood being the greatest example of this). The whole thing should be over before you're done cleaning the brain matter out of your headphones, but dealing with close to an hour of virtually the same song is just overkill.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 6
Production: 8


Written on 22.11.2010 by
Doc Godin
Former EIC. Now just a reviewer guy.
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Axe Argonian - 23.11.2010 at 01:43  
I agree with the last statement that professes that aggressive albums should be short. Some albums are just too long these days. Case in point, despite the sheer ball-smashing aggression of Meshuggah's ObZen, it was just too long, and by the end of it, I felt as if I were simply listening to just one very repetitive song. Unless an album sounds very good and succeeds in periodically shifting its sound, no album should last longer than 50 minutes, in my opinion.
Dane Train - 27.11.2010 at 15:58  
Let's face it, unless you actively pursue the sub-genre of Christian metal are Dane,

That is how I felt it was going to start

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