In early February we featured the fetching piece of cover art by Raymond Swanland that you see above, along with the fetching news that Iceland’s Beneath would be releasing a new album named The Barren Throne, via Unique Leader on April 29. We’ve written frequently about Beneath. To quote our chum Gemma Alexander, who interviewed members of the band in Iceland a couple of years ago, they are fairly new, but the musicians behind the name are some of the heaviest hitters in Icelandic metal.
“[W]ith Unnar Sigurðsson of Ophidian I fame on guitar, and with drums provided by Atrum’s Ragnar Sverisson, Beneath came out swinging in 2009, winning Iceland’s first Wacken Metal Battle. An EP followed in 2010, with their first full-length, Enslaved by Fear, released [in] July . Needless to say, all of the usual metaphors involving blunt force trauma apply.”
Beneath have a new vocalist since their last release — Benedikt Natanael Bjanason (also with Azoic) — and we’re delighted to give you a first listen to him and to what Beneath have cooked up for their new record as we premiere the official lyric video for “Chalice”.
The new album was produced by the Wieslawski brothers at Hertz Studios in Poland (Behemoth, Dead Infection, Vader, Decapitated), and we have a feeling you could have guessed that from what you’re about to hear even if we hadn’t told you.
“Chalice” is a super-heated, blast-furnace explosion of technical death metal viciousness. It displays not only an eye-popping level of instrumental skill (and a complete lack of mercy), but also a dark, seductive melody that makes the song memorable. It’s a fantastic teaser for what should be a highlight of 2014 for fans of obliterating tech death.
The album features 53 minutes of music, and this is the track list:
The Barren Throne Track Listing:
1. Depleted Kingdom
3. The Barren Throne
4. Putrid Seed of Affection
5. Iron Jaw
6. Sovereign Carnal Passion
7. Sky Burial
8. Veil of Mercy
9. Mass Extinction Codex
10. Storm Drainer
Now, feast your ears on “Chalice” (pre-order the album here):