Thrash Hits

July 28th, 2010

Album: Demonic Resurrection – The Return To Darkness

Demon Resurrection
The Return To Darkness
Candlelight Records
12 July 2010

by Tom Dare

In the modern era, metal has become global. Perhaps the biggest boon of this spread is a reprieve from some of the repetitive recycling of ideas too many bands fall victim to. This can come from tones and melodies from non-Western cultures, or it can be through a different blend of influences from within the metal sphere. India’s Demonic Resurrection fall very much into the latter description.

Recent times have seen a number of bands from outside the usual metal nations bring the sounds of their homeland to the table. With Melechesh’s Mesopotamian brutality, the soaring North African melodies of Myrath, and Chthonic’s haunting Taiwanese beauty (ahem), the raft of ideas previously unheard in the world of distorted guitars has proved fruitful territory. So it is perhaps a touch disappointing that Demon Resurrection have such clear European influences.

It seems fair to suggest that the band may at some point have listened to Dimmu Borgir and Cradle Of Filth. Certainly the symphonic extremity has a Cradle-esque feel up to a point, albeit with a touch more death metal influence than Suffolk’s foulest. However the melodic elements seem to have a certain waft of power metal about them. This is most notable on the strongly Primal Fear-tinged ‘The Warriors Return’, which perhaps tellingly is also the name of a song by Nocturnal Rites. The overall effect is a feel somewhat similar to early Children Of Bodom with the slightly camp evil aggression. The main difference is an expansive, epic grandiosity that marks them out, along with an occasional dose of clean vocals. Thankfully they also lack Bodom’s excessive shred obsession. This expansive nature does cause a few problems, however.

While The Return To Darkness is packed with great ideas and does have some outstanding moments, it is unclear quite where the band want things to go. While the ten minute epic ‘Lord Of Pestilence’ clearly puts things in progressive territory, while tracks like ‘The Unrelenting Surge Of Vengeance’ are on more accessible ground. It is absolutely no coincidence that these two track are amongst the strongest on the album – both have very clear directions, be it sprawling progression that takes several listens to get your head around or hooks and punch that are instantly memorable. A few too many of the others get caught between the two and end up doing neither.

Watch the video to ‘The Unrelenting Surge Of Violence’ by Demonic Resurrection:

One trap Demonic Resurrection have blessedly avoided is frontloading their work. There is nothing more frustrating than putting on a record, being blown away by tracks 1 and 2 only to have everything thereafter descend into the dregs of filler. While the opening of The Return to Darkness does enough to whet your appetite, it is the second half of the album that contains the biggest hooks and the best riffs. It makes quite a long record more rewarding, as the slow start stops your attention wandering.

Demonic Resurrection may not be as original as some of the bands emerging from previously untapped wells of talent, but they do write music more engaging than the huge swathes of generic bands in the West that just overload with keyboards to cover up a dearth of ideas. While they may have a few issues expressing it, when the execution is right, Demonic Resurrection are certainly someone you should listen to.

4/6

Sounds like: Cradle Of Filth, Primal Fear, early Children Of Bodom
Top tracks: The Unrelenting Surge Of Vengeance, Lord Of Pestilence, Omega, I

Demonic Resurrection- The Return To Darkness tracklisting:
Between Infinity and Oblivion
Where Dreams and Darkness Unite
The Warriors Return
A Tragedy Befallen
The Unrelenting Surge of Vengeance
Bound by Blood, Fire and Stone
Lord of Pestilence
Dismembering the Fallen
The Final Stand
Omega, I

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