Serpentine Dominion is an American death metal supergroup consisting of Killswitch Engage guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz, Cannibal Corpse vocalist George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher and former The Black Dahlia Murder drummer Shannon Lucas. They released their debut album on October 28, 2016.
Intro—-This intro is a surprise…a nice gentle acoustic guitar greets your ears and you are puzzled…like….what the f^%k……the sound is gentle and melodic…..until 50 seconds into the track…then you wake the hell up! The melody is still there….but the intensity and the speed almost masks it. No vocals….just incredible fast and brutally beautiful music. Melding right into…..
The Vengeance In Me—-The familiar vocal smacks you right upside the head like a steam engine. The music and the vocal is much more accessible than Cannibal…..you can actually catch what George is saying….but that does not make it any less brutal and genuine. There is an actual chorus that is accompanied by the entire band…this is accessible brutality…..fuckin’ brilliant.
Vanquished Unto Thee—-The music seems a bit deeper on this track…the guitar squeals are incredible and the opening growl from George is from the depths of hell. At times Fischer sings at a higher tone rather than screams and there are some brilliant, brilliant, brilliant clean vocals on the chorus. The song soars at times with a fantastic guitar lead….but manages to sound brutal as hell thanks to the vocal from George and the pummeling bass line.
Divide, Conquer, Burn & Destroy—-Brutal right out of the gate, the vocal seems even deeper than ever imagined at the onset. The lines come at you fast and surprisingly understandable. The overlays from George are superb….deep and powerful overlay-ed with his higher range. They give the song more depth…the music is incredible….the drums much more present on this song as are the lead guitars. This release is a triumph.
Sovereign Hate —-The music comes at you beautifully constructed from the darkness….slowed down and with undeniable melody. The drums seem to build and build and you can feel goosebumps all over as the song gets bigger and bigger. The break allows the brutal bass line and the vocal to enter. The lyrics are fantastic…..with overlay-ed vocals again and the words coming at you blistering fast. The breaks in the song add variance and allow you to really appreciate all of this talent. The clean vocal on the chorus is just fantastic! This is a must have. Think Fear Factory!
On The Brink Of Devastation—-A full on assault and return to vocal and musical brutality, this begins the minute you hit play. There are outstanding drums on this track as well…..with the vocals really the star of this show. This is just magnificent….more added clean vocals keep this band and release fresh and from suffering from monotony. This is superb.
Jagged Cross Legions—-Drums and bass……drums and bass…..make for an intense freakin’ adventure. When you add in the evil growls….screams and belly gut from George and this is a standout track. The clean vocal is again present on the chorus giving the song a melody that makes it really accessible. This is fantastic.
Prelude—-Light with another gentle guitar intro that mirrors the beginning of the release, this shows so much diversity in the band. The fact they all got together is just amazing. This is damn beautiful guitar work…with a slight hum that runs through the underbelly of the song…giving it a mystical feel. I’m just amazed….one of the best things this year.
This Endless War—-Ending this release…..after just 26 minutes, this track, right from the onset, has an epic feel. The guitars are brighter and the drums layed to the back of the mix for the first 25 seconds or so…..the vocal enters and puts your brain in a different place. The vocal is brutal…..sounding evil and manic. The clean vocal on the chorus in such sharp contrast with George bellowing in over them. There is nice speaker play on this track….the song moves from headphone to headphone. Just extraordinary!
***** out of 5