Whore Of Bethlehem - Ritual Of Homicide
Whore Of Bethlehem’s “Ritual of homicide” is an aural gaze into the horrendous and beautifully orchestrated sounds of what true and unadulterated death metal should sound like. The band truly take control of their art and make it their own, even though there are comparable vibes and influences abound. While there is an undeniable technical feel to the music, there is also an undeniable old school approach to their own sound, to the concoction and presentation to these hellish hymns.
I think that when a band uses an old school platform as a foundation to build upon with their own ideas, this where they will find their own style; and that is exactly what the band has done with this release. If the term “traditional death metal” could ever be applied to a band in the modern era of the genre, it would be Whore Of Bethlehem. Their music flows with a certain continuity not found in other bands playing the same genre or similar genres of extreme metal. It’s at this point where the band blur the lines between tradition and the modern era. The tone of the riffage definitely brings back memories of death metal’s younger years, but it’s the skill and passion that brings this material to the forefront. Guitarists Phil King and Ryan Sylvie are quite proficient with their instruments and carry their riffing abilities over the top with their superb solo skills.
Behind the drums you have Sam Axelrad who keeps the rhythm going in a timely manner, or an untimely manner when called for. Great showcase of skills here. If your favorite part of a band is the drum work, you will not leave listening to this album disappointed. Alan Berryman is on the bass too keep things bottom heavy and pulsating hard in your brain. His basslines accent this material extremely well as if giving it an added darkened element overall. Musically, it’s like walking in the dark and you can feel something is out there, you can’t see it, but you know it’s there. Completing the line-up is James VanDenBerg on vocals. There isn’t a lot of variation here but his vocals patterns are perfect for this material. I would have chosen the same type of pattern myself. When you put all of these elements together, everything sounds well constucted and thought out. Imagine, if you can, Cannibal Corpse ("Gallery Of Suicide" era), Immolation ("Dawn Of Possession" era), and Gorguts ("Erosion Of Sanity" era); and you can get a basic idea of what is happening here. It’s good to see that there are bands out there that are keeping elements of traditional death metal, and its ideals, alive and well not to mention revered. As long as bands are doing this, I feel that the quality of this genre will keep rising for generations to come.
Whore Of Bethlehem are another band whom I consider to be artists because, anything that sounds as well put together as this album, needs to be considered art. Well thought out art at that. The ideas, brainstorming, writing, practicing, recording, rearranging, Sometimes, musicians put forth more effort and time into their work than any other type of artists. When you listen to this album, you’ll understand what I mean. I am already anxious to hear what these guys do next! Contact the band or Comatose Music for info on this highly recommended release!
5 / 5 STARS
May 26, 2023