It has been five years since The Amentia released their last full length, 'N0N'. There have been three EP's to satiate fans in the interim; 2011s 'VO1D', 'Chokehold' in 2012 and 'Teeth', earlier this year in February. Finally the wait is over and their latest extreme offering, 'Flesh Is Heir' is unleashed upon the world. Guaranteed to thrill the loyal followers and terrify the unsuspecting.
'Flesh Is Heir' is an album that almost defies definition, as have, in a lot of ways, their past creations, the band describe it as; not industrial, nor death Metal or even black Metal, just The Amenta. It is just extreme Metal but you will sense the elements from many Metal sub genres, more importantly, it is their approach and ability to merge these elements that make it such an intense but refreshing listen.
The band describes the lyrical themes and music as: "Dealing with the constant war in the human psyche between the faction that desires obliteration and the faction that struggles in the mud. This bipolar theme is carried through to the music which is at once, ugly and beautiful, organic yet electronic, lightning fast but also crushingly slow, and always dark as pitch."
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The album consists of eleven monstrous great monoliths of sound, constructed from strong hooks and riffs, avant-garde samples and electronic elements, brutal powerful vocals and blasting drum work. Opening with the brilliantly brutal title track 'Flesh Is Heir' with its catchy sinister repeat riff opener, distorted vocal layering, skilled use of samples, brilliantly phrased with poignant pauses and it is totally unpredictable, you have no idea where this will take you.
The album continues in this vein with 'Ego Ergo Sum', which has a good chugging groove from the offset and excellent caustic vocals. 'Teeth' has a distant distorted opener that rushes at you as it builds and then you run into that discordant distorted wall of sound, skilfully garnished with harsh screams and growls and unnerving quiet segments. Aural respite comes in the form of 'A Womb Tone', a pulsating, unnerving, hypnotic instrumental soundscape.
'Obliterate's Prayer' opens with distorted repeat riff that builds alongside the drum work which repeats like a chorus around chugging riffs and pounding drum work segments, within the extreme brutality of the track you sense a strong desperate emotion, largely from the vocal intonation, powerful emotive and impressive. This is my favourite track because it has a haunting quality that kept it in my mind whether I wanted it there or not.
Moving straight into 'Sewer', distorted chugging riffs made all the more intense by the addition of the quieter, disturbingly reflective segment.
On 'The Argument', jangling repeat guitars are entwined with keyboards and samples with the ever present powerfully brutal vocals. 'Cell ', a haunting track, the sound building with distorted guitars and deep, guttural and distorted but distant vocalisation, very powerful and atmospheric.
'Disintegrate' opens on the most disturbing scream I have heard in a long while, a forewarning of the ensuing musical mayhem that follows, excellent. 'A Palimpsest' is a haunting instrumental of samples over layered with distorted drum and guitar work which has a dark mechanical feel. It flows nicely into the final track, 'Tabula Rasa' where powerful drum work is very prominent on this equally dark intense and excellent finale. I loved how at times the guitars and drums merged together as a huge dark, organic sound; I was blown away by it.
This is a great album, their best to date and if you fancy something challenging to listen to, something a little bit adventurous, you may well enjoy 'Flesh Is Heir'. I did!