VALLENFYRE – Splinters
- by Matt Coe
- Posted on 02-07-2014
What happens when you take 4 well known death/doom metal musicians and put them together to relive the past glories of early death metal? You get the second album "Splinters" from UK act Vallenfyre. Paradise Lost’s Gregor Mackintosh handles vocals/guitar, My Dying Bride’s Hamish Glencross is on second guitar, Scoot on bass, and At The Gates/ Paradise Lost’s Adrian Erlandsson holds down the drums- and know going in that you’ll get 11 songs of straightforward old school European death metal here.
Be it longer, doom-oriented material such as the 7 minute plus "Bereft" or closing title track, or the quick hitting numbers that waste no time in their punk-oriented charm such as "Scabs" or "Cattle"- this is perfect for people who miss early Paradise Lost, Napalm Death, and a touch of that Swedish Sunlight sound where the tones just cut your body to the bone. Kurt Ballou’s GodCity Studios gives Vallenfyre that feedback oriented savagery that made the late 80’s/ early 90’s bands so different and unique to the underground. When Gregor chugs out the slow note repetition that punctuates "Dragged to Gehenna", you can’t help but chuckle or grin at the staying power of primitive death metal. Gregor’s voice captures that raw growling / fearsome nature that made the music scary for parents yet enrapturing to teenagers who needed that vengeful outlet to live for.
Pick out "Splinters" on your next venture to the record shop or through your favorite digital purchasing avenue. Especially if you hate all the technically brilliant musicians who have infiltrated the style while forgetting to just write songs instead of showing off in a chops manner. Vallenfyre prove you can write and deliver killer death material in short and longer bursts, as long as your eyes are on the prize: non-compromising and lethal.