PANZERCHRIST — Battalion Beast (review)

PANZERCHRIST — Battalion Beast album cover Album · 2006 · Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
Battalion Beast is the 5th full-length studio album by Danish death metal act Panzerchrist. The album was released in August 2006 through Neurotic Records. This is the first Panzerchrist album to feature the same lineup as the preceeding album. Drummer Reno Killerich left the band for a period of time but as his replacement didn´t work out he returned to help out and record the drums for Battalion Beast. So he should probably be considered a session musician on this release. The same with Karina Bundgaard who plays the keyboard parts on Battalion Beast.

The music on the album is brutal and mostly very fast-paced death metal. Lead vocalist Bo Summer has changed his vocal style a bit on this album compared to his style on the preceeding albums. He now employs both his usual deep growling vocal style but now also a higher pitched raspy style. I´ve seen Battalion Beast labelled as blackened death metal and that´s probably because of the raspy vocals, but that´s one of the only things on this album that reminds me of black metal. Actually it´s more a band like Napalm Death that comes to mind a couple of times during the playing time. The song War in the North is actually pretty close to sounding like black metal though so maybe there´s a little truth to the label blackened death metal. Only occasinally though. The 9 tracks are all of high quality and with songtitles like He Is Dead Who Will Not Fight, The Spirit of Soldiers and the above mentioned War in the North it´s safe to say that the trademark Panzerchrist war themed lyrics are still present. And as on the predecessor the lyrics are in English.

The musicianship is tight and while this isn´t technical death metal, nor does it try to be, the playing is still pretty impressive. As usual drummer Reno Killerich is a "menchmachine". Ultra fast blast beating and fills. That man is a force to be reckoned with.

Panzerchrist is a pretty new discovery for me, even though they are a Danish act and I´ve heard about them and read reviews of their albums on several occassions. Listening to Battalion Beast, I´m actually a bit ashamed that I haven´t checked out their music before now, because this is simply some of the best Danish death metal I´ve ever heard and they deserve all the support that they can get. Well I´ll make amends right now and recommend Battalion Beast to fans of great quality brutal yet catchy death metal. A 4 star rating is fully deserved. I still consider Soul Collector 2000 to be the band´s masterpiece but I put Battalion Beast above Room Service (2003).
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