Right up there, staring you in the face, is one hell of a piece of cover art. It seizes attention in electrifying fashion, and when combined with the name of the song it accompanies — “Pulverized By Warhammers” — it makes a striking statement. It’s gratifying to see that the photo of the band who made the song — Chicago-based death/thrashers Crusadist — is just as savage and menacing.
But what of the song itself? Does it live up to all these outward trappings? Well hell yes, it truly does, as you’re about to discover for yourselves.
The song is the first new music released by Crusadist since their excellent debut album The Unholy Grail in 2019. But it’s not as if the band have been asleep since then. Instead, they’ve toured alongside acts such as Inhuman Condition and Micawber, and supported such death metal icons as Nile, Kalmah, and Vital Remains.
Of course, the covid pandemic derailed normal activities for Crusadist, as it did for all of us, and it had an influence on this new song, as vocalist Shaun Albro explains:
“We wrote ‘Pulverized By Warhammers’ during the pandemic lockdowns. It was a very dark and uncertain time. A time when we were bombarded by restrictions, uncertainty and confined by these walls of separation that seemed to arise at every turn. It really began to feel like a prison that we desperately needed to escape from.
“‘Pulverized By Warhammers‘ is a 4 and a half minute bludgeoning auditory onslaught where Old School Death Metal meets the New Wave. Thick and pounding with groove, brutal and memorable. PBW tells the tale of a tenacious rebellion with intentions to destroy anything and everything in its path”.
Shaun‘s preview of the song is an accurate one. Living up to its name, it fucking hammers, thanks to the deep gut-punch of the bass and the brutish bludgeoning of the drums. The savagry of the music is also unmistakable, thanks to the slash and swirl of the guitars and the voracity of the belly-deep growls and howls.
But once those mighty grooves have softened up your skull, Crusadist also go on a thrash-fueled attack, fusing roiling and rampaging riffage with blistering snare-work, spine-tingling screams, and bursts of hornet-swarm fretwork. The song also includes an eerie, dismal solo that catches fire and begins to scream, and another one that’s a super-heated spectacle.
But in addition to unleashing full-throttle paroxysms of even more crazed and exhilarating instrumental and vocal ferocity, the band also repeatedly return to one of the song’s main missions — to bring down the war hammers and beat you senseless.
“Pulverized By Warhammers” was mixed and mastered by Cryptopsy guitarist Christian Donaldson (Ingested, The Agonist, Beyond Creation), and that fantastic cover art is the work of Giannis Nakos from Remedy Designs (Suffocation, Evergrey).
To coincide with the new single, the band have partnered with Indie Merch for a new range of designs including that amazing artwork for “Pulverized By Warhammers“, which you can grab here:
We’re also told that this is just a taste of what’s to come, and that the band are currently mixing a new recording right now. Crusadist have also been hitting the stages again too, and you can catch them live on ‘The Unholy Procession Tour’ alongside New Hampshire death dealers Begat The Nephilim, and festival appearances at Slam Dakota Death Fest and at New York’s Rage Fest alongside Malignancy and Mortal Decay. For details, check out the band’s social media.