REVIEW: VLTIMAS – “Something Wicked Marches In”
“BLOOD OF THE DEVIL’S IN OUR VEINS!”
Blitzing, startling, lethal and self-explanatory as it is, this opening line is featured in the song “Diabolus Est Sanguis”, which is one of the nine crushing tracks in the upcoming album ‘Something Wicked Marches In’, by the newly formed metal super-group, Vltimas.
Vlitmas, while though fresh and starting to place its foot in the ground, consists of names that are long known in the metal community. Armored with freshly brewed metal, the super-group consists of legendary guitarist Rune “Blasphemer” Eriksen (Ex-Mayhem, Earth Electric, Aura Noir), ferocious drummer Flo Mounier (Cryptopsy) and acclaimed vocalist/bassist David Vincent (Ex-Morbid Angel). The three-piece has extensive amounts of extreme metal history behind themselves, and they got together to manifest this sinister work of art into reality.
The geography of this trio could have been a problem, but it didn’t hinder the creative process of the album’s manifestation whatsoever. Spanning across Norway, France, and the United States, the musicians took the time to meet one another and sit themselves down to bring their concepts into the audible reality. Once the final draft was ready, the trio entered Orgone Studios in Woburn England in May 2018 to work with producer Jamie Gomez Arellano, and the dark concoction created by these hard-hitting individuals was finally into existence.
Kudos to Blasphemer, the album’s title track starts off with the classic church-burning styled atmospheric guitar riffage, inducing the listener with shivers down their spine straight from Scandinavia. While the tension builds up to start sounding like conventional, angst-packed black metal, Flo is quick to kick in and add the spices and kicks (pun intended) of pure unaltered death metal. The atmosphere folds in perfectly when David lets out a roar which is known and soul-warming to Morbid Angel enthusiasts.
And just like that, the three veterans of extreme metal, along with their heavy, head-banging influences, have put out the best niches of their collective musical experiences and have filled the album with the best of everything, extreme. Fast paced drumming, eerie tremolo picked guitars, blast-beats, beefy death metal vocals, spooky choirs, and an overall mystifying atmosphere. It genuinely is a marriage between all things atrocious and breath-taking, from the instruments and the musicality, right down to the lyricism.
While the album starts with the title track which could be equivalent to smack to the face, the entire album is a machete to every tangible part of the human anatomy. The tracks that personally stick out are “Praevalidus”, “Monolilith”, and “Total Destroy”. Lyrically, “Prevalidus” is a poetic masterpiece, speaking of dissidents in the everyday life, abstaining from the rules that are the norm of everybody, whilst making their own principles of life as it passes by. “Monolilith” reeks of dark, chaotic romanticism, oozing with how one would feel affection for the love of their lives. (Assuming they’re all Metalheads. Regardless, guys keep a look out for this one if you want to growl one out for your girlfriends.)
Overall, the new album shows a lot of promise and is destined to be one of the key albums of 2019. The combination of these three highly acclaimed musicians and the highly detailed music-writing makes this album a concrete footing in the fresh career of the supergroup. Vltimas is a force that is uniquely itself but has a good, heavy touch that fans and death metallers alike will know all too personally.