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Vulcano - Epilogue review

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Band: Vulcano
Album: Epilogue
Style: Death metal, Thrash metal
Release date: April 2024

01. Prelude + The Wizard
02. On The Wings
03. At The Dawn
04. The Mirror
05. The Book
06. The Clock Time
07. The Renegade
08. Epilogue

This Vulcano has been spewing out hot death/thrash metal for over 4 decades now, but could this Epilogue spell the end of their lengthy eruption?

The Brazilian death/thrash band Vulcano is one of the oldest acts to emerge from the country's metal scene, having been established right back in 1981. They also have quite a remarkable 13 full-length albums in back catalogue, which now includes latest effort Epilogue. With a line-up featuring original member Zhema Rodero (guitar) alongside Luiz Carlos (vocals), Gerson Fajardo (guitar), Bruno Conrado (drums), and newest edition Cleiton Nunes (bass), what does this latest album offer?

Vulcano's style of classic ferocious thrash with hints of OSDM and a raw blackened crusty edge is absolutely unmistakable, and if you're familiar with the band's previous efforts then I'm sure you'll expect this latest album to follow suit, and that it certainly does. The album is very short at 25 minutes in length; throughout the 7 short tracks featured here, listeners are met by all the elements previous releases offered, including ultra-shredding blackened wailing leads, heavy groovy riffs, furiously rapid drumming, and aggressive raspy vocals. These elements continuously flow from one track to the next, at no point letting off steam, like an unrelenting, neck-breaking whiplash that seems to be over in a flash. In fact, the only time that this album isn't full-on relentlessly aggressive is during the opening narrative "Prelude", which acts as an intro leading into the main opening track "The Wizard".

Maintaining their highly aggressive energy is one of the key factors here, something which clearly shows in their performance, as they play as if they're still stuck in a 80s time capsule, back when the genres of death and thrash were at their fresh peak. However, the songwriting is where the album's minor downfall is, which is often the case with so many old-school thrash/death metal acts that have been churning out the same formula for such a lengthy period. Sure, this formula has worked so well for them up until now, so why bother changing it? But it seems to have reached the point here where it's become all too familiar and predictable. The songwriting is far from bad though; in fact, there's still plenty for old-school thrash/death fans to admire. There are plenty of headbangable riffs and quality solos, the vocals are impressively performed, and the rhythm and tone is as good as the band has ever done. There's also not much to complain about production-wise either, but the melodies and grooves are perhaps a tad too much on the basic side, meaning there's nothing that really sticks with you; maybe this is due to the relentless speed and duration of the album, or perhaps it's signalling a band that are beginning to run dry of inspiration?

Although Vulcano have never quite reached the heights of fellow thrash/death countrymen Sarcófago or Sepultura, and been a long way from rubbing shoulders with the great pioneering act Possessed, they've managed to develop a legacy of their own, one that puts them on the map not just in Brazil, but for metalheads who've a tendency to look deeper into thrash/death. If this release is to be the band's actual epilogue, then they can hold their heads up high, because despite this not being their most memorable release to date, they've remained just as energetic and ferocious as how they first started off all those years ago. What they've achieved over the last 4 decades is certainly commendable.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 4
Production: 7

Written on 26.04.2024 by Feel free to share your views.


Comments: 1   Visited by: 6 users
26.05.2024 - 07:46
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Hihi good point about formula it works since band do not have albums out every year but sometimes I wish they reach 20.
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