Wretched – Son Of Perdition Album Review
An unforgiving album by a band with an even more unforgiving sound.
Released: March 26th
- (of a person) In a very unhappy or unfortunate state.
- Of poor quality; very bad.
Synonyms: miserable, poor, pitiable, abject, lamentable.
So, even before we start, the name sort of gives things away. You can guess you’re in for something of a heavy listen if you haven’t heard of these guys before, and if you have heard of them then you won’t need to do any guessing. Start off with a lovely bit of thrash, then a sprinkling of 80’s inspired death metal then finally throw in some more modern death metal influences; turn the blender on and watch the mix get darker and darker until you’re left with something so murky it looks like Charlie Sheen’s soul. At this point, the mix won’t look that appetising but it tastes bloody gorgeous. Try it and you’ll see I’m right.
Wretched are on their third full-length release now. Based in Charlotte,North Carolina, the band was formed in 2005 and have so far sold over 10,000 albums in the US. They’ve toured with other filth-riffers such as Suffokate, Within The Ruins and The Browning and are part of this year’s The Metal Alliance Tour with Devil Driver, Job For A Cowboy and The Faceless. Since the band’s inception they’ve set out to make creative, progressive metal that is as punishing as it is flawless and with every release they’ve achieved that goal. There hasn’t been a release where the listener’s left feeling as if their face has just been melted off by a sinister-sounding hook or Adam Cody’s screams, which change from low guttural bursts to piercing, anguished highs effortlessly.
Son Of Perdition follows in its predecessors footsteps. It’s another inventive album to add to their growing discography and is a heavy, polished, textured piece of work. The band has even added elements of depth and darkening mood by accompanying a full-choir piece and scored orchestral arrangements that are littered throughout the album. The album may be heavy, but it’s extremely structured as well and the flawless craftsmanship is stronger on this album than it’s ever been.
Oblivion, the opener, is a creepy, impending-apocalypse track. A choir is used to full effect, and the organ that slithers up and down the track really does conjure images of a priest blaspheming the cross as his church doors are broken down by a horde of flesh-eating zombies. The following track, Imminent Growth, explodes with Cody’s screams and a melodic riff which is backed-up by constant drumming – it wouldn’t be a surprise if the bass drum broke a few times recording this – and the vocals are reminiscent of a lot of modern death metal bands but most notably The Black Dahlia Murder, Carnifex and Trigger The Bloodshed spring to mind like some sort of hell-hound. The deep bass-line digs into the track like a land-mine and it settles in comfortably alongside the wailing guitar solo that ducks in and out.
Repeat…The End Is Near shows Cody’s vocals at their nastiest. Ranging from low to high, almost in turn, they really bring the track to the fore. The stop-start riff, which soars and then crashes onto the canvas of the drums which propel it back into the air with a crash of the china cymbal, jars and staccatos its way through the track – making for a technical and lingering sound which stays with you when the track’s dead.
Karma Accomplished appears after three instrumental tracks. The resulting effect is that the track pummels you like Tyson in his prime. It bites, snaps, jabs at your guts and then finally finishes you off with a roundhouse haymaker, the groove almost impossible not to bang your head to. The vocals are, again, top-notch and really shows Cody as a vocalist up there with the best in this genre.
This is a great album that shows Wretched as a band who’re destined to make an even bigger rumble in the shady dealings of the metal world. It’ll beat you black and blue, but will give you a helping hand up once all their seemingly never-ending energy’s been used up. Which is never, then. An unforgiving album by a band with an even more unforgiving sound.