Death Angel – Humanicide (Album Review)

Death Angel – Humanicide (Album Review)

When emerging onto the Metal scene during the late ’80s, Death Angel was among one of the youngest and the most exotic breeds of Thrash-oriented Metal bands with most of its members’ being of Filipino descent. Following the heels of fellow California-hailing Metal gods such as Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Exodus, and Testament, Death Angel soon made a name of its own—an equally grand one. It released its debut full-length, The Ultra-Violence, in 1988, and followed this up with a slew of relentless, powerhouse albums, from 1988’s Frolic through the Park to the latest powerhouse, Humanicide.

Released on Friday, May 31, 2019, through Nuclear Blast Records, Humanicide is Death Angel’s ninth studio album. Produced by Jason Suecof (Deicide, Trivium) of Audiohammer studios for the recording and mixing, along with the mastering of Ted Jensen (Slipknot, Pantera) of Sterling Sound, it further etches the name of the enduring American band.

Currently comprised by Rob Cavestany (lead guitar, backing vocals), Mark Osegueda (lead vocals), Ted Aguilar (rhythm guitar, backing vocals), Will Carroll (drums), and Damien Sisson (bass), the follow-up to 2016’s The Evil Divide is delivered on the historical plate of Thrash Metal.

Consisting of 11 tracks, including the bonus cut, Humanicide opens straightaway with the breakneck speed of the title track—dramatic, progressive, ultraviolent—Death Angel at its most sinister! The sonic chaos continues with the blood-curdling “Divine Defector,” whose razor-sharp guitar and pounding bass and drums slice and drill relentlessly into the listener’s eardrums. With the ensuing “Aggressor,” Death Angel’s then combines a bit of Neoclassical Metal and Nu Metal, exuding grooves and echoes of Pantera (“Cowboys from Hell”) and Sepultura (“Arise”).

“I Came for the Blood” is a change of style and pace, paying homage to the older gods of the genre such as Judas Priest (“Exciter”) and Motörhead (“Ace of Spades”)—ruthless, faster, more chilling. Death Angel then turns Neoclassical once again with the gloom and doom of “Immortal Behated,” which then explodes into an outburst of Thrash shards and splinters. This is while “Alive and Screaming” and “The Pack” follow appropriately, as they consecutively grate the same heart-racing angst and intensity out of the loudspeakers—further displaying Death Angel’s place in the pantheon of Thrash Metal pioneers.

Furthermore, “Ghost of Me” whips nostalgia and maturity, as its structure will surely remind the initiated of the band’s beginning and its delivery a sign of honed precision. And then there is the standout track—the catchy and melodic “Revelation Song,” which is a breath of freshness from Death Angel’s often dark discography. Reaching the conclusion, the relatively stable lineup of Cavestany, Osegueda, Aguilar, Carroll, and Sisson round their latest onslaught with the unforgiving Speed/Thrash Metal hybrid “Of Rats and Men” and bonus track “The Day I Walked Away.”

Without further ado, Humanicide is a well-woven representative of Thrash Metal in the current era. Its concept and substance shows that there is still so much more to expect from Death Angel in the forthcoming new decade, considering the renewed energy that the band has emanated in its last three albums starting with 2010’s Relentless Retribution. That is why Cryptic Rock gives Humanicide 5 out of 5 stars.

Purchase Humanicide:

[amazon_link asins=’B07QDSKFMC’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’crypticrock-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’09fddbac-2ca0-4da6-b26b-5fd1dc568e5a’]

Like the in-depth, diverse coverage of Cryptic Rock? Help us in support to keep the magazine going strong for years to come with a small donation.
aLfie vera mella
[email protected]

Born in 1971, in Metro Manila, Philippines, aLfie vera mella is a healthcare worker, singer/songwriter, and editor/writer. He was the frontman of the ’90s-peaking Philippine Alternative Rock / New Wave band Half Life Half Death, which released a full-length album and several singles on Viva Records. aLfie worked at Diwa Scholastic Press as an editor/writer of academic textbooks and supplementary magazines, focusing on Science & Technology and English Grammar & Literature. In 2003, aLfie migrated to Canada; he has since been living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He works full-time at a healthcare institution, while serving as the associate contributing editor of Filipino Journal—a local community newspaper in Winnipeg—tackling Literature, Languages, Cultures, Lifestyles, and Music. aLfie has been a music journalist since the mid-’90s for various print magazines as well as websites. He started writing album reviews for Cryptic Rock in 2015. In 2016, aLfie published Part One (Literature & Languages and Their Cultural Significance) of his Essay Series, Can You Hear the Sound of a Falling Leaf?; in 2021, his first book of poetry, Pag-íhip sa Dáhon ng Kahápon [Blowing Leaves of Yesterday]. In his spare time, he enjoys reading books and listening to music. aLfie is a dedicated father to his now 13-year-old son, Evawwen; and a loving husband to Kathryn Mella, who herself moonlights also as a writer aside from holding a degree in Bachelor of Arts, Major in Sociology.

No Comments

Post A Comment

Cryptic Rock
Show Buttons
Hide Buttons