Envenomed-Evil Unseen (Own Label)

A solid effort...

When you read a lot of band press releases, it doesn’t take you very long to pick up on the wide range of jargon used by PR professionals to essentially describe a very slim spectrum of sounds. As such, you tend to pick up something of a sixth sense for when an album’s likely to be horrible based off of the language used in a press release. An album described as “melodic thrash with influences from Iron Maiden and Metallica” sets off alarm bells in my head. Such tepid language can only be used for the stalest of the stale. I know what to expect, the same kind of slick poppy rubbish peddled by Bullet for My Valentine and associated parties, copied and pasted together by a panel of experts to best appeal to the youth demographic. Utter pish in as many words.

You can expect my surprise when Envenomed’s new album was the total opposite of that.

Just why their sound manages to succeed comes down to the question of how they put their influences to work. That press release didn’t lie, there’s no doubt that their sound is an amalgamation of the Metallica/Testament thrash blueprint with the more melodic stylings of bands like Iron Maiden and Symphony X; however, there’s a real finesse to the song writing here that stops the material from feeling trite or manufactured. Sure, on the heaviness scale this leans towards the more poppy end of the spectrum but it’s of a kind more similar to what British thrashers Savage Messiah are doing as opposed to a band like BFMV.

Sonically, Evil Unseen is very crisp and clean which is fairly common for this kind of more modern fare. It helps to accentuate the strong guitar melodies used throughout the album but also allows the band to get down to business when a bit of extra muscle is needed, like on the blistering Will of Man that has riffs easily capable of being on an Overkill record.

This album ain’t exactly reinventing the wheel, but is a robust collection of punchy, melodically driven metal. It’s certain to scratch the itches of more than a few metal fans out there.

Evil Unseen is out now.