In their ninth year as a band Tombstalker are in a good place. Their crusty, sloppy debut album from 2015 was an enjoyable tribute to 90’s death metal with some punkish kicks here and there. The issue I took with the full-length at the time was how generally messy it sounded but as first impressions wore away it had a sort of ‘Realm of Chaos’ style to it and I’ve been looking forward to what they’d do next. ‘Chaotic Devotion’ is a great way to hear what Tombstalker is all about in just eight minutes: Big meaty death metal sound, some Sunlight Studios fuzziness, some Finnish death metal style riffs, and a heap of the previously mentioned Bolt Thrower record. I heard some d-beat in there on the full-length, less so on this EP, but that could just be a general Nihilist/Carnage influence coming from the same place. The production is clear and everything is audible, though they’ve kept it rough enough to still feel appropriately oppressive and dark.
When I first got the EP I was kinda paranoid that these were cover songs from 90’s bands and I’d look like an idiot reviewing a covers 7″ without knowing the originals. After a bunch of googling I am pretty sure these are originals, and hey I appreciate that because I’m a huge fan of this style of death metal. “Scared to Death” and its opening riff initially reminded me of the original Power Rangers theme song, so that was fun for a minute, but the song itself is awesome. It has the needling riffs of classic Finnish death with the pushy, punkishness of Autopsy… not unlike another lesser known group, Coffincraft. I also can’t rave enough about the the cover art. The chaos Gnostic chained Satan thing gets my wiener dancing. I’m also way prone to buy t-shirts solely because of cool designs and I’ve enjoyed all of the artwork this band has chosen so far for their stuff. Excellent EP and I can’t wait to hear their next album when it comes out.
|Released||September 19, 2017|
|Follow Tombstalker on Facebook||Get the album from Tombstalker or Boris Records|