Review Summary: A fantastic death/doom metal debut from a band that's bound to have a little something to catch every extreme metal fan's ear
If one were to listen to DeathevokatioN’s “The Chalice of Ages” without knowing anything about it, and they were asked to guess where and when it was recorded, I highly doubt their first guess would be California, in 2007. This album, in the vein of old school death metal, sounds like it could have been recorded somewhere in Finland in the early 90s. It would fit in right along side acts like Demigod or Adramelech, with their style of creating a slower, evil atmosphere, as well as some very dark riffs and tones.
In addition to being old school death metal, there’s a lot of doom influence and even some thrashy parts to this album. The slower tempo that’s often present, the sinister feel the album gives off, and the vocalist’s style really gives this its doomier edge. However, it’s still death metal so it can get just as fast and brutal as the rest of them. The track Infinity Blights the Flesh is a perfect example of the balls-out intensity that that this album is full of, as well as the prominence of melody and harmonization. That song- hell, the entire album has a great combination of melody and thick, crunchy heaviness. Listen to the title track and you’ll see what I mean, a perfect harmony between the two elements.
The songwriting is top-notch, the album doesn’t get dull throughout all its 61 minutes. It’s hard to make a death metal album that long without it getting repetitive or boring, but DeathevokatioN do just that. Three out of the nine songs clock in at over 8 minutes long and they’re probably the best songs on the album, even if they do flow together a bit awkwardly. That could be said for the whole album really, but you can’t tell because you’re too drawn in by the vehemence of it all to notice.
A plethora of delicious riffs, creative drum patterns, and stunning harmonies prove that the instrumentation on this album is great. Everything’s sound fits the music so well, other than the bass, of course, since it’s pretty much nowhere to be found. Other than that the production does an impressive job. It’s got a hint of that gritty, muddy sound that fans have come to love from death metal while still being clean enough for all the separate melodies to be heard clearly and distictly. Doomful, menacing, vicious, all while being strangely dulcet, there’s something for just about every fan of extreme metal with The Chalice of Ages. Want death metal with some brutaility? How about some slow, brooding doom thrown in for good measure? Some melody and, f*ck it, an evil acoustic passage or two just because. If you like any of the above, you’ll find something to enjoy here.