death metal underground
The Ultimate Death Metal Resource
Death Metal Search Engine
Bolt Thrower - ...For Victory
Review: Bolt Thrower hurled forth for their first effort a potent speed grind album, In Battle There Is No Law, and then another fast, grinding album Realm of Chaos, but in the two albums after it, Warmaster and The IVth Crusade, edged toward making an album of songs which were powerful in isolation but too much alike to be heard as an album; earlier release felt this tension as well, but to lesser extremes.
...For Victory not only overcomes this problem but ups the ante and creates a unique extension of style as well as epic songs with amazing prophetic lyrics. The grind is structured, melodic even, but the ragged vigorous sawbone of Bolt Thrower riffs is flamboyant in the reductive abrasion that plays off its own dark melodic sense to remind us of context and then brutalize the listener again. Resounding explosivity of fundamental differences in tone and rhythm hangs suspended in the atmosphere as a smoothly oiled machine slides a frame of reference from underneath it, and motion begins from within to counteract.
This album treats war as a metaphor for modern life, and writes about modern conflict brilliantly; as an artistic document from the metal/grind camp, it has few peers to match its ambition in defining concept and sound as synchronized with the sonic demands of the genre. As is rational for the course of pure grinding ancestry, jarring expectancy riffs and percussive slams alternate in animal motion to generate the precariously balanced ecosystem required to generate melodies which transcend motion for pure shape and in that, a symbolic communication of desire with perhaps behind it emotion.
Overlays and melodic forays extend blunt phrasings and overall structure to songs is more contrapuntal than repetitive, leading from relatively sedate phrases to low-hung dirge riffs and then culminating in charging grind, forming a song from first echoing patterns in different places and then bringing those places and their formative tensions together in a unison of dischord. Lyrics are discernible from hearing the vocals, although singing is in the same hoarse battlevoice that called out over the music of earlier albums: heavy and dark, foreboding and apocalyptic. Of note are the title track and "Armageddon Bound."