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Immolation - "Atonement" (CD)

Immolation - "Atonement" CD cover image

"Atonement" track listing:

1. The Distorting Light
2. When The Jackals Come
3. Fostering The Divide
4. Rise The Heretics
5. Thrown To The Fire
6. Destructive Currents
7. Lower
8. Atonement
9. Above All
10. The Power Of Gods
11. Epiphany

Reviewed by on March 9, 2017

"...'Atonement' kills on every battle field."

Jackal is a term for an assassin. According to John Perkins in his book “Confessions of an Economic Hit man,” a jackal is hired to kill a leader who doesn’t want to play the game, a game that will surely put his country in jeopardy. East Coast death metal legends Immolation put this idea on wax when they recorded the song “When the Jackals Come.” This song puts into perspective the corrupt New World Order policies and visions laid out on the group’s new album “Atonement.”

What’s great about Immolation releases concerning the singing is that one can hear and understand the lyrics, a couple of listens make a lyric sheet obsolete, but don’t expect to hear winey clean vocals, nope, this is brutal death growling! Immolation has always created dark, scary music, but there is something about “Atonement” that just sticks.

People that read lyrics compared to people that listen to music as side chatter is a small matter, so on to the music. “Atonement” doesn’t contain any real curve balls in terms of style, one know what he/she is getting when buying an Immolation album. There is the trademark Robert Vigna false harmonics and the disharmonic segments where all the instruments seem to take on minds of their own. The group knows how to stay diverse and dynamic. Just listen to the tempo changes throughout the album including the huge push during “Rise The Heretics.”

Immolation never seems to get old, as the band creates music that is very catchy. The musical and writing skills can simply not be done justice on this review. One has to hear them. From psychosis-inducing guitar effects, especially via Robert Vigna’s axe, to hollowed-out solos, to pure speed and groove, “Atonement” kills on every battle field. Expect this release to find its way on many year-end lists, especially ones devoted to death metal.

Highs: Immolation Sticks With The Plan and delivers what the fans expect.

Lows: The group could try some new things, however insignificant and light.

Bottom line: Get This Record!

Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls
4.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)