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'Where Greater Men Have Fallen'
(Metal Blade)

jools green

Jools Green


2005s 'To The Nameless Dead' brought Dublin's Primordial from an underground band to the forefront of Metal and since then the band have had their ups and downs but album number eight, the aptly titled 'Where Greater Men Have Fallen' finds them back on track.

As part of this fresh start they moved to a new rehearsal room, a new studio and a new engineer at Grouse Lodge deep in the middle of Ireland, enrolling the talents of Gomez (Cathedral, Angelwitch, Grave Miasma) to work on the new album with the plan to: "Keep the Primordial trademarks but add a more live sound, making it broader and heavier."

This certainly seems to have paid dividends for this eight track release that spans almost an hour. With their previous works my listening tended to dip in and out but 'Where Greater Men Have Fallen' is definitely an album that I can immerse myself in across its entirety.

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I can't fault the compositions or the musicianship, all well executed, fairly clean vocals but with a powerful harrowing quality that stops you in your tracks, precise, deliberate drum work, and darkly atmospheric guitars.

Although I was deeply immersed in the whole album - it's a powerfully dark yet emotive release right from the opening track - there were a few tracks which really captured my attention; the opening track 'Where Greater Men Have Fallen' is probably my favourite of the release, the rhythmic plodding pace that draws you in with an extended intro on this opening eight minute marathon pretty much setting the time scale for the whole release with all but one passing the six minute mark.

The dirty edge to the riffs that rise and fall in a hypnotic manner sat against the powerful vocals is a compelling combination.


The dark haunting 'Babel's Tower' is slow paced but hugely powerful with superb broad ranging vocals and 'The Alchemist's Head' which has a superb mix of plodding, deliberate beats, hypnotic riffs and the most vitriolic vocals of the album.

'The Seed Of Tyrants', the only track under six minutes, also stands out for its faster, more intense pace, a track that took me by surprise right from the opening yell of "traitor!!" I like the vocal layering that starts to appear from just before midway where the track really builds, the riffing reaching an intense level by the close.

'Ghosts Of The Charnel House' caught my interest also with its opening drum work, which expands into a dirty, sleazy, almost doomy, bass heavy groove, accompanied by well phrased drum work, and ending on hauntingly reflective guitars and after a huge instrumental intro while 'Born To Night' settles into a superb mix of dirty distorted and dark rhythms balanced against harrowing cleans making it another powerful track.

After listening to 'Where Greater Men Have Fallen' I hope this is the beginning of a new era for 'Primordial'. I didn't expect to enjoy this release anywhere near as much as I have.

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