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Sinister - Diabolical Summoning
Review: After their legenday first album, Sinister improved instrumental precision, and feeling thus liberated assaulted their listeners with an album of reasonably technical riffs tied together by a hookish melody in the style associated with bands such as Gorefest, Dismember and early Gorguts. While these songs are sparse in the gestalt that might unify their driving rhythm riffs and the "old world" style peripatetic melodies to which they are joined with the support infrastructure, this album has its peaks of beauty and power that find compare nowhere else in death metal.
While these songs often seem too sparse in their constructive affinity the essential tendencies in songbuilding are beating under the thick skin with a passionate heart, even if the end product like later Gorefest often ends up disassociated in its joining of complex cyclic themes. Vocals are iron-tough and levelled at the listener directly with a gravely dead monotone. Percussion remains adept but vigorously underscores key points of phrase almost too directly, including the rushing percussive riff barrages that are reminiscent of Malevolent Creation.
Of all death metal in the second wave, this album and Gorefest remained unique for their dedication to well-structured, orderly, rhythmically hookish but not offbeat-marionette phrases which used neo-baroque melodies in power chords and tremolo-picked lead rhythm riffing. This contributes an otherworldly air to a band that too often tries to throw in interstitial extremity as a means of competing with the death metal field at the time. Taken as a whole, this album was a wise transition between Cross the Styx and the more discretely compact compositions of Hate.