'The Witchhunt' is the twelfth full length from death Metal trio Master, whose music history spans in excess of twenty five years and whose founder, Paul Speckmann, is considered by many a death Metal pioneer and is highly influential on the genre.
If you are expecting anything flashy or technical from Master, who still consist of the same line-up as on the last six albums, Paul Speckmann on vocals, Alex Nejezchleba on guitars and Zdenek Pradlovsky on drums, you will be disappointed. There are no gimmicks or technical twiddling, but what is on offer is honest, classic, and catchy old school death Metal played with bags of intensity and attitude, standing in defiance of all past and present trends.
Every track is blazing with energy and most importantly, fun.
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Paul's vocals have always been somewhat unique, a fabulous gut-wrenching, growling snarl that defines the overall band sound, the drums are excellent, prominent and competently executed but not overbearing and the impressive quality from the guitars comes from being so fast and vigorous.
Master have perfected over the years the right formula for no frills death Metal and this is a perfectly balanced, intense offering, end to end.
Track wise, the album makes for a great listen across all eleven tracks, no warm up intro, just straight in and down to business, an intense listen from start to finish with no strong favourites but no duff ones either, however some certainly require a specific mention.
The opening and title track, 'The Witchhunt', has such an intense pace it makes you feel you feel like you are the one being chased and hunted. 'Waiting To Die' has a sinister opener and I loved how the drums play a big part of the build before the track settles down to a catchy plodding rhythm; there is also a crazy paced thrashy guitar break towards the end.
On 'The Parable' I loved the tempo shifts between chorus and verse. 'Remove The Clowns' has a good, intense pace and punchy chorus with nice dirty guitar break in the latter part. 'Raise Your Sword' starts as an intense plod before turning into an insane paced chunk of musical mastery garnished with possibly the best solo of the album.
Finally, 'Wipe Out The Aggressor' is five minutes of crazy excitement.
The rather sinister yet impressive artwork for 'The Witchhunt' is by ArtWars Media Design and the album is available on digital, CD and white, black or blue vinyl formats.
If you like death Metal old school, in your face, politically-charged and in the bands words, "pissed-off", you will love this. I certainly do; it is such a great listen!