Review Summary: It's an Amon Amarth album.
Few melodeath bands can claim to be as consistent as Amon Amarth. No matter how many names you throw around, whoever you mention is bound to have stumbled at least once. Amon Amarth on the other hand seem to be virtually impervious to releasing a poor album, or even a poor song, but their apparent infallibility is a lot less impressive when you consider that their latest offering is basically Once Sent From The Golden Hall Pt.9
. Amon Amarth have worn their own groove so deep that it’s virtually impossible to make a mistake, but there will have to be a point where Amon Amarth are forced to expand their sound. Regardless of whether or not you believe the deadline has passed, Johann Hegg and Co have decided there’s still more to be extracted, and we’re once again left with another enjoyable but wholly disposable album in the form of Deceiver of The Gods
If you’ve heard any Amon Amarth album before, then you’ve heard this one. This is a bit of a shame because the album can definitely hold its own against other modern melodeath releases; it’s just that a person can only take so much of the same thing. Coming off the back of an underwhelming Surtur Rising
(by Amon Amarth’s standards), Deceiver of The Gods
is perhaps an indication of the band becoming complacent. It appears to be the band going through the motions, as they’ve always done, only with less vigour than in their heyday. Obviously, it would be quite harsh to say this album is poor by any means, and if this is your first Amon Amarth album then it will more than sate your appetite for blood, mead and the blistering cold. The riffs are the usual Amon Amarth plateau of well-produced, melodious tremolo riffs and cyclical, lead-heavy choruses. Johann Hegg is still a more than competent vocalist, continuing his gradual improvement in delivery and range as can be seen through the band’s discography. The drumming is tight and consistent, keeping the beat with the other instruments perfectly, but never daring to steal the spotlight at any point. Though it’s not ground breaking or spectacular, Deceiver of The Gods
is an air tight collection of accessible tunes from the lighter side of extreme metal, and that’s where the problem with this album lies. It would be fine if this were a debut, a sophomore or even a tertiary album, but having now repeated yourself for a decade and a half and having seemingly peaked during the mid-late 2000s, Amon Amarth are now in genuine danger of going stale, despite the obvious quality of their material.
Deceiver of The Gods
is the product of a formula that can do no wrong, and thus is a great album, but that’s not really a reason to celebrate. There’s no tangible reason you would play this over one of Amon Amarth’s superior records, as it contains nothing the band hasn’t done before and better. When it’s part of a discography in which the only distinguishing feature of each album is how watered down they are relative to each other, Amon Amarth latest release will in all likelihood slip away unnoticed forever.