OF WRATH AND RUIN

Melodic Death Metal • United States
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OF WRATH AND RUIN is a US melodic death metal/ power metal act from Gloucester, New Jersey formed in 2004. The band released their debut full-lengths studio album "Conquering Oblivion" in 2011.

(Biography written by UMUR)
Thanks to UMUR for the addition and Nightfly for the updates

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OF WRATH AND RUIN Conquering Oblivion album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Conquering Oblivion
Melodic Death Metal 2011

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OF WRATH AND RUIN Conquering Oblivion

Album · 2011 · Melodic Death Metal
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Conor Fynes
'Conquering Oblivion' - Of Wrath And Ruin (7/10)

Not unlike the much-acclaimed Wintersun, Of Wrath And Ruin fuse extreme metal elements into power metal, a style that's generally thought of as being amongst the lightest brands of heavy music. Although the music of this US act is generally referred to as death metal, or 'melodic death metal', harsh vocals are the only naturally 'extreme' aspect of the music they play. On 'Conquering Oblivion', Of Wrath And Ruin makes this surprisingly uncommon approach work, and though they do not outright amaze me on this first album, there is little doubt that Of Wrath And Ruin have some incredible musical skills, and utilize them tastefully to boot.

Although power metal comes first to mind when hearing Of Wrath And Ruin, there is also a strong connection with the Swedish melodic death metal scene. 'Conquering Oblivion' sports the same balance of technical guitar work and anthemic melodies brought forth by In Flames and At The Gates, although Of Wrath And Ruin have just as much in common with more typical power metal groups like Edguy. As is generally the case for bands of this sort, I find much of my enjoyment for Of Wrath And Ruin's music derived from their guitar work. The riffs are generally neoclassically-oriented and fast paced; thankfully never quite reaching the 'shred' threshold, but maintaining an energetic velocity that rarely buckles. On the other hand, there are beautiful acoustic segments to give listeners a greater taste of depth. The drums are arguably the most 'metal' part of the album, with ample bite and a penchant for the double-kick. The bass is painfully inaudible, which gives the sound of the band a somewhat tinnier range. Lastly as far as the instruments are concerned, there is a synth-laden approach to much of the songwriting. Of Wrath And Ruin use the keyboard element wisely, keeping it in the background as support for the guitar. Keyboardist Bob Thomas is no pushover, however; though never as important to the music as the guitar, he brings a pleasant neoclassical sensibility to the composition.

Although there are no 'pop' melodies to nod your head to on 'Conquering Oblivion', the music is never challenging or jarring to listen to, although occasionally nine minute song lengths can take a couple of listens to properly wrap one's head around. Although Of Wrath And Ruin take the surprisingly bold risk of using harsh vocals for such a melodic sense of instrumentation, they unfortunately default on the 'beauty and the beast' format of vocals; that being a male growler, and a female singer to do the 'pretty' melodies. Laura Tyburski's vocal additions may adhere to a melodic death metal cliche, but she is a very good singer. Guitarist Pat Brose offers his growls to fill out the more extreme half, and though he is an incredible guitarist, his vocals lack the sort of power and force I normally look for in growls. He enunciates the lyrics better than most growlers, but, like the general sound of Of Wrath And Ruin, his delivery is a little far based in the treble than would typically fit my tastes. Of Wrath And Ruin finds themselves deep within the melodic side of the death metal spectrum, and while it is admittedly not something I would normally go for as a listener, they are undeniable a talented, and well-rehearsed band.

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