Now and again, an album comes along that, immediately, on first listen, jumps out of your stereo (or, in this case, a towering 2,000 watt DJ rig), grabs you by your scrawny, hungover little throat and screams at you “bet you weren’t expecting this, muthafucka?”. This sophomore release from Vancouver thrashers Titan’s Eve is one of those.
Thrash is not the most accurate description for this highly impressive opus… yes, musically, that is very much where it and the band lie, and all the standard references (Exodus, Forbidden, Overkill, Testament) are there. The rhythm section of bassist Jesse Hord and drummer Casey Ory lay down a stronger than concrete foundation – with the latter particularly impressive in his playing style which combines subliminal restraint combined with some killer fills (check out ‘Hollow Gods’ for a prime example of this) with some pretty brutal downbeats (e.g. on the awesome ‘Frozen In Time’, when his fury is truly unleashed), while lead guitarist Kyle Gamblin lays down a mighty fine line in riffs, which, again, are in turn melodically aggressive (such as on the anthemic ‘Destined To Die’ and the aforementioned ‘Frozen In Time’) and just plain rip-your-skull-off brutal (the title track and the brilliantly old school ‘Divided We Fall’ being prime examples).
The surprise package, however, is Brian Gamblin’s vocals, which give the entire album a unique hardcore, punky edge: they contrast everything so beautifully as to give the songs a totally different dynamic, making them stand out from the norm.
Ironically, though, it’s an instrumental which serves as the true standout moment: ‘A Wound That Never Heals’ is also acoustic led, with a Zeppelin-esque opening riff and a Mayan drum pattern, and sits like an oasis of calm amid the chaos around it. Closer ‘The Void’ is nigh on the perfect way to finish any album, with it’s gorgeous, winding riff combined with the brutal rhythm and vocals, leaving with you with just that in your musical soul when it is finished.
An apocalyptic 9.5/10.