Album Review: Impending Doom – The Sin and Doom Vol. II

After nearly 5 years, the kings have returned. I first came across Impending Doom back in 2010 when There Will be Violence was released after a friend of mine played me some of their music. Admittedly, their music on that album was more ‘metalcore’ and given I was a big As I Lay Dying (who coincidentally just released a new video) fan at that time I ended up loving that album. I then checked out some of the earlier material and the album Nailed. Dead. Risen. From the first few seconds of “My Nemesis” I was blown away by the sheer aggression behind the music. Anyone who has heard that album can attest that it is 35 minutes of face-melting music. So 11 years on from that release and 5 albums later, have the band retained that aggression that was present on that album? In two words: oh yes.

Right from the opening few seconds of “The Wretched and Godless” you know this is going to be a dark album. Dropping into the traditional pattern of down-tuned riffing and the harsh vocals of Brooke Reeves, the song grabs the listener and shakes them awake so that they can receive the message which is being relayed to them. “Burn” shakes the listener in a different way in that it has a visceral breakdown towards the end of the track which pummels everything into oblivion.

“War Music” is arguably one of my favourite tracks on the album with the superb drumming of B-Town and chorus that you just can’t help but sing along to. This is the sort of song that would set the pits raging at a show with walls of death and circle pits galore. “EVIL” is very much evil and pulls no punches with the insanity starting from the word go. As I described it to a friend, this song is a sledgehammer to the face in terms of how heavy it is.

“Paved with Bones” and “The Serpent’s Tongue” continue the earth-shattering breakdown laden affairs with the former being a touch more restrained than the latter and having counter-melodies interwoven with the syncopated riffing. “Unbroken” slows things down a tad with a more mellow intro but don’t be fooled into thinking that they’ve gone soft. After a few seconds, the destructive riffing returns to breach the peace but still retains slithers of melody here and there to break up the continual assault of down-tuned riffing. The following track is the polar opposite with dissonance reigning supreme though with a title like “Devils Den” and lyrics including “slaughter the demons that are crawling on my brothers back” you would expect it to be a very dark track with no room for lush melodies.

“Everything’s Fake” is next to play and it reminds me of “Deceiver” from Baptized in Filth in terms of its impact and lyrical themes. The music video for this track is nothing short of immense as well so I highly recommend you check it out at the bottom of this article. “Run For Your Life (She Calls)” ends the proceedings on the Gorship session with a song that you could have found on Death Will Reign with it’s whispered parts of “she calls” haunting the more sparse parts of the track.

I will be the first to admit that the band have changed from the early days in terms of style but at the same time I think this new style suits them better. With this album, the band have created an album which avoids becoming samey but still retains all the characteristics of a deathcore album. With some of the heavyweights of the scene now diversifying and introducing different elements from other genres, it is good to see that Impending Doom are sticking to their guns and still delivering pummelling, crushing music which gets you thinking – do they still have it all these years later? Oh yes, they very much do.

The Sin and Doom Vol II is released via eOne music on 22nd June.

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