Winds of Genocide

Usurping the Throne of Disease

Usurping the Throne of Disease

Reviewed By Simon Milburn
Published 17 March, 2015
Link: Facebook

Usurping your senses one listen a time

In this day and age of digital everything at our fingers tips which ultimately means more music available to us than is imaginable, it’s surprising that a band has taken some nine odd years to release their debut long player. I mean, let’s face it - it’s easier now more so than ever for artists of any genre to get their music out there. Whether it’s heard or what not is something else. But the process of recording and releasing has never been easier. So it’s interesting to note that Durham City (England) quintet Winds of Genocide have taken their sweet time to get to the point where their first album is out there for the masses to consume. To be fair, they’ve had their share of line-up issues and it’s not for the want of trying as they’ve released a demo, an EP and two split releases along the way.

With a quick Winds of Genocide history lesson behind us, the most important thing now is the groups nine track debut of crust fused, D-beat driven, blackened death metal and it’s quite a solid showing for the band’s first proper outing. Winds of Genocide blends the rawness of early Bathory and Venom, the riff heavy groove of Bolt Thrower, rapid fire picking of Dismember and crust vibe of Disfear together and spits out a blood curdling aural assault that isn’t for the faint of heart. This is stripped back, guttural death metal in every way.

The raw vibe of Usurping the Throne of Disease even has an early Darkthrone kind of feel to it at times, particularly on “Deathstrike of the Scythe”. The album as a whole could easily have been released in the formative years of Scandinavian death metal and it would have fit right in. That’s pretty clear cut from the opening track which has as much impact as the opening bars of Entombed’s “Left Hand Path” or Carnage’s “Dark Recollections”. The good thing is that it only gets better as it progresses.

The mix, courtesy of Fred Estby (of skinsman duty for Carnage and Dismember) is equally as unpolished as the tracks are raw. His work behind the desk has certainly added to the crust that is a big part of what Winds of Genocide is all about. One thing that plays quite a part in adding something different to Winds of Genocide’s sound is the bass work by Dan Hekate (Horrified). Instead of just being a typical death metal bassist playing with the beat and chord progressions, his work is quite frantic and occasionally contrasting. Hekate might not be doing anything Cliff Burton-esque here but it is busy enough and subtle enough that it adds an interesting texture to the band’s huge wall of noise.

Winds of Genocide might not be for everybody. Some will struggle with the “not quite regimented” sound and timing of the songs. There’s a certain amount of sloppiness that is tolerated and expected from crust metal. But the core of Usurping the Throne of Disease is pure death metal. Y’know the type - the good ol’ Scandinavian death metal that helped shape the scene over two decades ago. It’s raw, uncompromising crusty death metal and it grows upon you with each listen. Give it a try. You just might like it.

Pulverised Records