ENGULFED – Vengeance Of The Fallen

ENGULFED – Vengeance Of The Fallen

Why I have never heard about this Turkish death metal trio before this excellent EP I’ll never know. Serkan Niron (vocals, bass), Mustafa Gürcalioğlu (guitars, songwriting) and Engin "Aberrant" Güngör (drums) pummel you with a brutal yet nuanced and catchy barrage of sophisticated craft for 4 tracks in under 25 minutes, combining classic stylings of IMMOLATION, ULCERATE and MORBID ANGEL with melodic approach of KATAKLYSM and old GOREFEST for one the best EPs in recent death metal.

Two tracks deserve special recognition. The first one is the perfect opener, "Rites Of Abandoned Heretics" with monumental melodiscism a’la ULCERATE’s "Destroyers Of All" (2007) while the more moshpit worthy parts recall the old Christian death metal ensemble INDWELLING from "And My Eye Shall Weep" (2003) , especially in vocals, the song with ebbs and flows which make it borderline progressive death. The second one, "Cycle Of Black Altar" recalls GOREFEST from the legendary "False" (1992). Both tracks are very catchy and the more melodic moments bring KATAKLYSM and albums such as "Epic: Poetry Of War" (2002) or "Shadows And Dust" (2002). The songwriting is simply top notch which brings me to the flaws.

Actually, there is just one flaw: the inconsistency when you compare the remaining "Summoning The Black Death" and "Scorched" to the aforementioned two standouts and notice that the former are not as progressive or catchy as the latter, that something seems to be missing, as if they stripped it down after the manner of MORBID ANGEL or early IMMOLATION without the finesse which makes it such fun to listen to and be tempted to play it repeatedly. Instead, mind wanders aimlessly waiting for those other two. They still deserve no less than 4.5/6 score and the final score balances against the perfection of their apparent counterparts.

Engulfed blows away with the mature songwriting, the production a perfect harmony of murky darkness and powerful clarity, with such resolve and boldness when you consider the country these guys come from, a country where playing death metal could get you jailed or worse. I recommend this disc but hope that the band will stick more to that progressive, catchy direction on future releases.