When writing reviews it’s good to be presented with an entirely unknown quantity, that way you can enjoy a record (or occasionally not) uncoupled from expectation. Take this release by Betraying the Martyrs – a surging, vital slab of metal, fuelled by razor-sharp guitars, melodic synth and powerful vocals. Unfettered from the usual press release Bullsh**, it hits home with all the force of a shotgun to the temple and impresses on every level which is as well because any band that labels themselves ‘christiancore’ are asking for a harder job of it than most!
Opening with ‘out of Egypt’ there is no gentle easing in, just a mammoth wall of Dimmu Borgir-esque guitar, synth wash and thoroughly unhinged vocals. ‘The covenant’ similarly offers little respite, with a brutal double kick assault underpinning BTM’s none-more-heavy metal. It helps that the band are, without exception, talented musicians who have clearly spent considerable time honing their art to this state of metallic perfection.
‘The righteous with the wicked’ combines enough pitch bends to sound like Zakk Wylde jamming with Lamb of God with a terrifyingly melodic vocal which will ignite the mosh-pit when aired live. The title track, meanwhile, wouldn’t sound out of place on the last Behemoth album it’s so soul-crushingly heavy and finally “being your servant” closes the disc in suitably apocalyptic style.
Eschewing the notion of radio play, this is a brutal, exhilarating album that is both well played and well produced. Filled with crushing riffs, mental vocals and memorable melodies this is an awesome release – highly recommended.