Album Review

Devangelic- Xul

Italy has been flying the flag for brutal death metal for a while and death metal in general that shouldn’t shock the die hard fans. Devangelic is no exception and they are releasing their best effort “Xul” on April 7th. It’s a relentless, technical, brutal assault from start to finish without losing it’s core goal of pummeling the listener. Lots of great guitar riffs, mood changes, drumming, vocal styles and well just about everything you NEED. 10 ass beating tracks (8 full length, 2 transition tracks if you want to get literal) that helps guide the listener long. Those said transition tracks are executed beautifully, breaking up the album for those who are new to brutal death metal or Devangelic.

“Xul” is originally a Sumerian word used to denote the “Evil” and this is the main topic of the new album’s concept. Basically an introspective journey in which the human being, since his appearance on Earth, is forced to face his own inner demons; evil seen as a representation of the “darkness” and the duality of man, who tries to exorcise his own negative emotions. But, as history teaches us, the negative almost always prevails in a battle against human weakness.

I thought “Ersetu” from 2020 was a stellar output, well this one “Xul” puts that one to rest. Not that any of their albums are bad by any means, but damn this one is impressive. The rhythms laid down by the rhythm section and Mario’s flawless guitar work is a big piece of the band’s success. The drumming is on the same level of proficiency as the faster sections are as impressive as the slower parts. Outside of the insane hyper blasts and constant double bass expected in brutal death metal, there ARE actually some slowed down sections to bang your head too and breaks up the faster parts nicely.

Devangelic gives you a chunky dose of brutal death metal with some ear pleasing technical guitar work that flows seamlessly on “Xul”. The vocals are so brutal yet you can understand some of the lyrics, which I always thought is a talent when it comes to death metal vocalists. It’s all low and *some* mid range growls so I’m all over this, knowing I don’t enjoy most higher pitched death metal vocalists.

All of this adds up to be one of the prominent releases in 2023 for the genre and is out April 7th on Willowtip Records. Check this release out because if you don’t that will be one of the worst mistakes of 2023 for you.

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