Review Summary: And the cycle repeats itself. Not completely terrible but very generic.
When most people think of Pestilence they think of Consuming Impluse’s tasty riffs ala the dueling powers of Mameli and Uterwijk, not to mention the respectable vocals of Martin Van Drunen. Fortunately those same guitarists are present on Obsideo but now the original guitarist Patrick Mameli has taken the center stage in handling guitars and
vocals. If that isn’t disappointing enough, the value of the guitar work on Obsideo is anything but glorious. Obsideo is comprised of solid riffs but the main problem is almost everyone on planet earth has already heard these riffs time and time again from not only Pestilence but also from many other bands in the death/thrash metal genre. Basically what you’re going get out of Obsideo is a combination of generic-boring riffs with occasionally moments that may be above average in delivery. To reiterate, I don’t mean ‘boring’ in the sense that the riffs aren’t any good, I mean ‘boring’ in the sense that if you had to eat oatmeal everyday of your life for every meal you would definitely be pretty sick of it.
Now that I’ve laid out the expectations of Obsideo let’s talk about the production. As with most bands putting out modern metal you will notice a rather ‘clean’ style to the approach. Envision a mix of Demolition Hammer’s Epidemic of Violence and Gorgut’s Colored Sands. So, as you may know, both of these bands actually have pretty good eq levels despite their ‘modern-clean’ nature. The same goes with Obsideo and I actually like the production quality found here but again what’s missing are the good compositions of music writing that compliments the production.
As mentioned earlier, the riffs in Obsideo are generic and boring because they’ve been done over so many times. But, you will get the whole flare of alternate riffings and tremolos and the drums are actually solid as well but when it comes to death/thrash music if the riffs are generic it doesn’t really matter how amazing the drums are. After multiple listens I can still find myself listening to a large portion of Obsideo without too much conflict but at the end of the day I’d rather listen to Consuming Impulse, Malleus Maleficarum, and Testimony of the Ancients. This is what makes me sad: a band with so much talent should be working towards putting out surpassing music or at least writing an album that rivals their past efforts, not falling into the same rut so many revival bands experience. Current guitarist/vocalist Patrick Mameli should focus on his songwriting and beg for Van Drunen’s return.