Saturday, October 22, 2011
Landmine Marathon - Gallows
Four albums in, and Landmine Marathon has not slowed down at all. Their latest offering "Gallows" is just as filthy and heavy as their previous three, if not filthier and heavier. The signature growls and screams of frontwoman Grace Perry are just as powerful as before, the riffs are just as crushing and everything else that makes Landmine Marathon as great as they are, is still present. There is nothing fake about this band and there are no gimmicks with these guys (and gal), just some straightforward death/grind that is sure to cause some carnage.
"Gallows" isn't much of a departure from the style that is found on the band's previous material, but there are definitely some improvements that make this their best album to date. First, is the darker sound. Landmine Marathon has never sounded more savage, and it really does show on the new material. The song "Beaten and Left Blind" starts off mainly as a crusty, grind influence track that hits hard, but then the break comes in after Perry delivers a wicked sounding growl saying "Your god is dead!" and this is truly where Landmine Marathon shines. The mix of the agonizing vocals with the fast death metal styled tremolos, along with the intense drumming makes for an amazing sound, and one that the band has perfected.
The other improvement is in the songwriting and the higher level of consistency throughout "Gallows." On previous records, there was usually a couple of standout tracks, but, while the others were still good, they just paled in comparison to the better ones. This album, however, has no filler tracks and there is at least one memorable moment on every track. Songs like "Three Snake Leaves" and "Dead Horses" are especially memorable because of how well the band combines catchy and heavy grind styled riffs with the dark and sinister death metal influenced tremolo sections and melodies. The track "Cutting Flesh and Bone" is a quick and lethal song that showcases the band's skills in writing a simple, yet catchy grind track, while the song "Morbidity" goes down a more doomy, death metal path on the complete opposite side of the spectrum.
There are definitely no complaints to be made about this album. "Gallows" has so much variety on just eight tracks, yet they all sound like a Landmine Marathon song, and they all kick some serious ass.
"Beaten and Left Blind"
"Three Snake Leaves"
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Final Rating - 4.5/5 or 90%.