Album review: Ulcerate – Cutting The Throat Of God

New Zealand’s Ulcerate once more reimagine death metal on titanic seventh full-length…

Album review: Ulcerate – Cutting The Throat Of God
Dan Slessor

Some of the best music exists at the intersection where absolute control meets utter chaos. Ulcerate have walked that line for 22 years. Returning with their seventh album, the New Zealand trio deliver a collection that is deeply emotional and unrepentantly violent, straying further into post metal territory while never losing sight of their savage death metal roots.

With the shortest track clocking in at over seven minutes this is truly epic fare, brooding opener To Flow Through Ashen Hearts conveying this, with its haunting passages some of the most melodic material they have put their name to, played off against the track’s ultra-violence. Constantly, there is an intensity that is undeniable, something that surges particularly potently through To See Death Just Once, which has a desperate urgency to it.

Rather than solely relying on distortion to do the damage, guitarist Michael Hoggard drenches his riffs in processed effects that add an otherworldly feel to proceedings, and is still immensely heavy, with contorted, unpredictable drum salvos underpinning this. The roiling nightmare that is Transfiguration In And Out Of Worlds is a prime example, with blackened moods and a dense atmosphere driven by the warped aggression unleashed by the instruments.

The closing title-track crushes every last breath out of the listener, not that there is much left by that juncture. Once more, Ulcerate prove why they are at the vanguard of death metal and nearly everyone else is playing catchup, for this is moving, riveting, peerless music that stands apart from all crowds.

Verdict: 4/5

For fans of: Behemoth, Neurosis, Morbid Angel

Cutting The Throat Of God is out now via Debemur Morti Productions

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