Company: Metal Blade Release: 2006 Reviewer: Al Kikuras Genre: Death
Melodic without losing touch of brutality and heaviness
A bit late to the prom on this one (The Toxic Touch came out in 2006) but now, even 2+ years after its release, The Toxic Touch is an album worth talking about. Why? Not because God Dethroned are blowing down doors or doing anything particularly innovative, but in a scene where there are 10,000 bands releasing 10,000 albums, and 80% of them just slide right down the drain of mediocrity without so much as a whimper, for a band to pen an album this consistently catchy, heavy, and classy is something to be noted. God Dethroned manage to be accessible without losing any edge. Melodic without losing touch of what death metal is really all about... brutality and heaviness. They are a metal band as proficient as their more commercially successful contemporaries like Children of Bodom, In Flames and Arch Enemy that manage to avoid ever really sounding "commercial," so even a crusty old metal fucker like me finds my fist instinctively forming the devil horns (thanks, Dio) when a song like "2014" comes punching and kicking out of the speakers. The songwriting is excellent, with a perfect balance of groove, thrashy speed riffing and incessantly memorable songs like "Falling Down" and "On Wings of Pestilence." I wouldn't have really called myself a God Dethroned "fan" up until this point, though I do like their debut The Grand Grimoire which came out a decade ago. The Toxic Touch is a strong enough record that I am going to go back into their discography and see what I have missed in between.
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