(TheMadIsraeli reviews the new album by San Diego’s Pathology.)
It’s amazing how Pathology have become an insanely reliable source of grotesque slamming sickness. The last two albums especially boasted an over the top Neanderthal brutalitarian ethic that was quite impressive. Unfortunately for the band, it seems that after releasing two albums that contained music capable of causing entire civilizations to riot, that previous lineup seems to have imploded — and that’s where Lords of Rephaim comes in.
All that remains are the founding guitarist (Tim Tiszczenko) and drummer (Dave Astor), as well as the return of vocalist Matti Way. I can see some people being skeptical, and Pathology may be losing some of the fan steam they gained with the last two records, because this is definitely not what earned them their recent boost in popularity. Lords of Rephaim is chock full of more technical riffs in the style of their older work, leaving the slam in the background to serve as a blunt instrument that breaks open skulls from behind as opposed to the ruthless assault displayed by the Huber-era stuff.
This shit still fucks you up, really hard, I might add, but it’s definitely a more precise as well as faster brand of cranial trauma.
“Mountains of the Dead” starts things off right, with titan-tonnage riffs and earth-plowing grooves. Although that pretty much describes this album as a whole. It’s kind of like if you were in the zombie apocalypse, and you sat there and thought to yourself, as I have many times, about how overrated and stupid the very premise is, and so you just get yourself a bulldozer and soup it up a bit so you can mow down the zombie hordes en masse. This would be the soundtrack to that.
Things are handled with a less over-the-top aesthetic and more of a cool, collected killer instinct, and in this particular album’s favor it works out really well. Quite frankly, I’m not sure another Huber-era Pathology record would’ve been what the band needed anyway. This is obliteration of all human life noise right here.
So yeah, buy it.
Lords of Rephaim is available through Sevared Records as well as iTunes.