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'Ashes Of Carnage'
( Contagion Records)

jools green

Jools Green


Plymouth's six piece death/sludge Metal beast WarCrab are back with their latest offering, originally independently released in 2014 as a limited pressing and digital download and now re-released and more widely available at a range of outlets, along with additional material from their debut self titled offering, extending it to a tasty seven track offering.

The five main tracks of 'Ashes Of Carnage' continue where the self titled debut left off, with strong influences of death, black, stoner and classic Metal rolled together in a thick, gutsy, heavy groove with a rich depth to the sound. The main difference this time that I noticed and it's probably down to better production is a greater emphasis on the drum work; this adds a lot more impact to the finished product.

The album opens with 'In This Iron Tomb', which starts out slow and crushing, overlaid by squealing guitars and gut wrenching growls that develop a delightfully deranged edge as the track progresses and which sits well with the oppressive edge that builds alongside, along with the tempo and plenty of focus holding direction switching, a superb track.

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Suspense rich and dramatic to open 'Lay All To Waste' has a crushing groove, a superb dark edge and haunting lead work which runs over the top as well as some interesting off kilter soloing.

Hypnotically dark 'Scourge Of Usurpers' is crushingly slow for the fast half with the pace picking up midway to a dirty groove and insane leads before the pace plummets once more and here there is a strong emphasis on the bass lines which adds a nice contrast.

'Entombed In Flames' is the album's longest offering at almost eight minutes it has a subtle hypnotic groove and slightly faster tempo which does rise and fall across the track, when it falls, becoming very heavy and dark. The track length is utilised well, tempo and direction changes are dramatic and frequent and there is a good vocal range executed throughout ranging from gut wrenching growls to vitriolic hisses along with more off kilter lead work.


'Ashes Of Carnage', the final and title track has a dark diabolical feel, very sleazy groove and sinister riff work.

The two bonus tracks included are the dark, ominous and dirty edged 'Return To Dust' and 'Nemesis Within', memorable for its chugging groove, addictive repeat riff and ground shaking growls. The clever aspect of this track is the midpoint drop away which tricks you into thinking the track will end, before returning for one final crushing assault.

The addition of these two tracks demonstrate the development on the WarCrab sound achieved since the release of their self titled offering. They stand alone as good tracks but the newer material is just that little bit better, as it should be.

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