This Washington D.C. area death metal band enter their fourth year of grinding away at the death/doom trade with one of the most nit-picked and polished sounding death metal albums of the last five years. The glossy thunderous production and meaty mix almost distract from the grit and fuming fire of ‘Order of Torment’ and it’s Cianide and Incantation fueled death machine. Their debut full-length ‘Forged Through Domination’ had already cast aside the gritty, guttural fury of their demos for a booming sound but it was nowhere near as eruptive and balanced as ‘Order of Torment’ and its High on Fire-meets-‘Unholy Cult’ skin-blistering guitar sound. The beautiful thing that is the mosh-riff ready production doesn’t necessarily mean Genocide Pact have advanced their song-writing prowess here, the style still generally rumbles along much like Gatecreeper and Disma before them.
The core of what appeals to me about bands like this is a balancing act of personality traits aped from the height of death metal’s post-‘Covenant’ popularity. You’ve got the stomping double bass groovin’ loudness of mid-90’s Obituary and the clangor of tank-blasted riffs and Manowar style song structures of Bolt Thrower and their trickle-down influence. Genocide Pact took extensive notes from oldies and carry with them an incredible sense of groove and death/doom darkness. My favorite moment from this album has to be “Spawn of Suffering” and the riffing that recalls Carcass ‘Necroticism: Descanting the Insalubrious’ era of technical and unexpected riffing. That said, there are few surprises to be had on ‘Order of Torment’ if you were already a fan of their previous album. It is quite literally the same pig with some glossy lipstick applied.
I can see why a bigger label would pick up Genocide Pact and pimp them out. Their old school versus new school doom/death appeal is infectious and the band has all of the right aesthetic sensibilities to fit right into any death metal tour lineup. I might suggest you check out what Desecresy has done for this type of riffing over the last decade, despite his far less polished sound. Likewise consider that Gatecreeper have a firmer grasp of variation and an equally big-ass sound. Not to downplay how meaty and beast-like ‘Order of Torment’ is but looking past their shiny sound and gloomy death/doom riffing you won’t find a huge cache of creativity beneath the surface level Incantation-meets-Bolt Thrower chugging and Diabolic lookin’ cover art.
|Released||February 2, 2018|
|BUY/LISTEN on their Bandcamp!||Follow Genocide Pact on Facebook|
Illusion of choice prevails. 3.25/5.0
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