Vltimas may be a new band, but it consists of three death metal masters- vocalist David Vincent from Morbid Angel, drummer Flo Mounier from Cryptopsy, and Guitarist Rune Eriksen from Mayhem. Their new album Something Wicked Marches In– released March 29- brings in all their expertises into one work; they all contribute elements of what they’ve done over the years, but nothing quite sounds like any of their original bands. Vincent had left Morbid Angel back in 1996 and made an incredible comeback, as I thought the vocals were the best aspect of this record.
I loved that it has classic death metal vibe throughout, but cleaned up a bit with a modern sounding twist, like for example, a more technical drumming style is used; its never stays stagnant for too long. Though I’m unfamiliar with Vincent’s vocals, he struck me as a death metal Randy Blythe (quite the compliment). The first track “Something Wicked Marches In” was able to pull me in with a Ghost-like riff. Most of the album works in between steady, and extraordinary fast and thrash-y, but never loses its crisp sound- nothing is drowned out and everything seemingly blends well. I thought”Monolilith” was too long and poetic, and came off as tedious the first couple of times listening, but quickly grew on me. I found the chorus to be extremely catchy with Vincent’s use of his creepy choir-like voice- something I thought could’ve been utilized more in other songs- and the dooming, looming atmosphere it creates- careful not to overbear with too much energy. The quickness of guitars in this track are never a hindrance to its overall slower pace.
His vocals are incredibly guttural, and production-wise, were made to sound dominant over harsh blast-beats and racy guitars. He seems to effortlessly keep up with the speedy nature of each track; I felt that there should’ve been more opportunity for them to shed a spotlight on his skills.
Favorite moment on the album was right after the lyrics end on “Everlasting”- there are a couple powerful instrumental movements that I felt should have continued on for a bit longer. Still, it was a decent outro! Right on, Vltimas.