VLTIMAS — Something Wicked Marches In (review)

VLTIMAS — Something Wicked Marches In album cover Album · 2019 · Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4.5/5 ·
"Something Wicked Marches In" is the debut full-length studio album by multi-national death metal act Vltimas The album was released through Season Of Mist in March 2019. Vltimas was formed in 2015 by guitarist Rune "Blasphemer" Eriksen (Mayhem, Aura Noir, Nader Sadek). Eriksen conceived the idea of the band and wrote some material which he send to drummer Flo Mounier (Cryptopsy, Nader Sadek) and asked if Mounier would be interested in joining, which he was. Shortly after Eriksen contacted vocalist David Vincent (Morbid Angel, Genitortures), who was fresh out of his second stint with Morbid Angel, and thus the trio lineup who recorded "Something Wicked Marches In" was completed.

With Vincent on vocals it´s almost impossible not to think of early 90s Morbid Angel, and references to that band and that era of death metal actually aren´t completely off when describing the sound on "Something Wicked Marches In". Eriksen´s black metal past and influences shine through on some of the riffs, but other than that this is old school influenced death metal through and through. It´s technically well played, but not with a focus on technical playing. The complexity of the riffs and rhythms are more a means to an end. Vincent predominantly uses his distinct sounding and intelligible growling vocal style, but there are clean vocals on the album too, which are sung in a deep kind of gothic rock/metal style. It´s nothing which takes away the focus from the death metal brutality and authenticity of the music though, just a little extra dark spice, which works perfect on the album and provides variation and atmosphere to the music.

The material on the 9 track, 38:22 minutes long album are well written, detailed, and intriguing death metal. Multible riff styles are employed, the guitar solos are very well played, and Mounier´s drumming is powerful and creative (the album features many breaks, tempo changes, but also great restraint as Mounier understands when to play more simple, when that is called for). While all tracks feature catchy hooks which return more than one time during a track, the song structures are a bit more adventurous than your regular vers/chorus formula structure, and the creative song writing ideas and intriguing compositional details make "Something Wicked Marches In" an interesting and entertaining listen throughout. Highlights include the opening title track, "Monolilith", and the delightfully fast-paced "Truth And Consequence", but all tracks on the album are more or less of an equally high quality.

"Something Wicked Marches In" features a well sounding production, which suits the material perfectly. There´s the right balance between power, clearness, and an organic touch. So-called supergroups often fail to deliver what the names and previous output by their members often promise, but Vltimas are, based on "Something Wicked Marches In", a shining example of the opposite, where a supergroup actually works and produce a memorable release. "Something Wicked Marches In" reeks class in every way possible and a 4.5 star (90%) rating is fully deserved.
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Pekka wrote:
41 days ago
Altars of Madness was my first reaction of course, but being a late 80s album the sound lacked the kind of fat punch I was looking for. I listened to Domination and the newest album now and they felt pretty good. Ordo Ad Chao didn't really work for me, might have a bit more with a slightly less lo-fi production.
Nightfly wrote:
43 days ago
Pekka, whilst not death metal, black metal in fact, you could check out Mayhem albums that feature Rune Eriksen's brilliant guitar work. Try Ordo Ad Chao and Chimera.
UMUR wrote:
44 days ago
Well...obviously the first four Morbid Angel albums :-)
Pekka wrote:
44 days ago
A guy in a music store in Stockholm sold this to my wife and I after she asked about his favourite releases this year. It's a great album and I'd like to hear some more of the same style, brutal with a powerful modern sound. I'm very green when it comes to death metal, so some suggestions to follow this with?
Vim Fuego wrote:
3 months ago
I was thinking it sounds very Morbid Angel-esque... And THEN I look at who's in the band.
Psydye wrote:
3 months ago
This may be my aoty too, but we'll see! ;)
UMUR wrote:
3 months ago
Saw them on the Copenhell festival in June. Great live band too.
Nightfly wrote:
3 months ago
This might be my album of the year, awesome stuff!

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