'Deathless Master' is the second full length release from San Francisco's crust influenced death Metal quartet Acephalix. Its creation, inspired by the success of 2011s limited edition compilation release 'Indeterminable Night', also marks the final stage of the band's transition, since their inception in 2007, from their hardcore punk roots to death Metal.
The first thirty seconds of listening to the opening track, 'Bastard Self', which for me was one of the stand out tracks, had a profound and positive effect on me. The general feel of this first track had such a strong appeal and unleashed upon my ears a brutal mix of pummelling riffs, driving deep drum work and guttural vocals.
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The success behind this album is the band's ability to keep it basic and not try and be over clever. The guitar sound is immense yet the riffs simple. It is fast, crushing and straight forward with that old school dirty feel to it and with vocals that are suitably powerful. For me, this is what makes it an exciting listen.
The album continues with the excellent title track 'Deathless Master', another which stood out for me, along with 'Tomb Of Our Fathers', for its soaring brutal vocal and varied yet simple riffs, both used to maximum effect. 'On Wings' has more soaring vocals and despite the limited lyrical content this track is brimming with raw attitude.
The next track 'Raw Life', although slightly slower in tempo, is no less brutal or less exciting. Then the pace once again picks up for 'Blood Of Desire', aside from a quick tempo change midway and also for 'In Arms Of Nothing' which has some interesting vocal squeals.
The final track, 'The Hunger', and also the longest, was again for me a standout track and possibly my favourite. Ending with a simple yet effective solo which leaves you thinking, maybe I will hit the play button and listen to it all one more time.
This is a great sounding, simple, straight to the point old school death Metal album with bags of crust attitude that's guaranteed to get your blood pumping and your head banging.
Engineered/produced by Jeff Leppard who also engineered their compilation 'Interminable Night'.
'Deathless Master' is out now on Southern Lord.