This is the second of Act of Gods releases, and finally we have an album to talk about this year, goddammit! Act of Gods has been formed by ex-Mutilated members. I always tried to whisper Mutilated‘s name under breath becouse those two demos they released in the 80’s are jewels that I didn’t really like to spread names of to unworthies (ah ah), I see already enough fake old school kids pretending to be “old school” and buying rare shirts on eBay for 180 euros without throwing the right pearls to them. Whatever, those two demos by this band were not just the best Death Metal we had out of France, they have also created quite some blubbering in the tapetrading scene, and deservedly. It was great to hear they’re back anyway, I totally skipped their first album but bet it that I’m going to fix this situation this very week.
Act of Gods is not just Abyssals 2, as much of the Morbid Angel (Altars) / Vader (Necrolust/Morbid Reich era) / Slayer riff worship has been substantially tamed in favour of a more straght in your face Brutal aggression. Track 5 “Black Death Cemetary” has an opening riffs which seems to be straight from “Blessed Are The Sick” but it really ends up there, with some intromission of that kind of old school Death riffing to keep the music warm and fluid, but the general pace is full bodied, if rather modern Brutal Death with a solid crunch. Mind ye, there is really nothing of American here, but as I said with Impureza and Hellspawn, it is a kind of Brutality which is exquisitely European. Complex and with a big dose of class in each and every riff. The vocals as well are not just plain non stop “death vomit” a la Deranged, but trasnpire some personality and variation while remaining guttural (hell yes!). I won’t paragon this band to their countrymantes Necroblaspheme becouse, despite the drumming is as fast if not more, you don’t get the impression of speed, the sound is just too heavy! Ah yes, there is also a multimedia video bonus track which looks real damn great, check it out with your PC.
Going into the lyrics dept., there seem to be some incoherent leap in the themes, as the album title might suggest yet another Egyptian inspired concept (Ma’at was the Egyptian incarnation of order and justice, whose body in the shape of a feather was weighed against a dead petitioner’s heart; if the heart was was deemed not worthy, the lion monster Ammit would devour it and the petitiooner would be condemned to “limbo”), while the song have titles that range from the Latin “Codex Ex Nihilo” (a book created out of nothing?), to the likes of “Inside the Hypersphere” which rings a bit Meshuggah (must be some sort of spherical tesseract, a solid with an extra dimension or something like that). I can’t really tell becouse Osmose has not sent me the booklet with the lyrics.
Also while the cover artwork looks nice, the back of the Cd uses a kind of digital looking font which sounds a bit out of place. While I hope I’m not seeing another Apophis again, an Egyptian theme developed in an interesting way would have made a nice packaging. Oh well, let’s stick to the music becouse that really rules. brutal, dark Death Metal to hear. Great.