Album Year: 2013
Illinois-based deathcore outlet Gates of Insanity have released their debut album/EP, ‘Extraterrestrial Revisitation’ only a year after forming. Kudos to this band for getting music out within such a short timeframe, as it helps them get on the ladder and creates a lot more hype. The band says they are for fans of Veil Of Maya and Whitechapel, retaining that crunchy, hard hitting deathcore sound but incorporating more melody and structure.
Straight away this album dives into a downtempo, dissonant melodic riff before that aforementioned crunchy sound begins – and man is it crunchy. When Gates Of Insanity feel like getting their chug on, they do it with fantastic execution. It’s those types of chug riffs that make you subconsciously nod your head, sounding really thick and just pure meat. As with a lot of deathcore bands, Gates Of Insanity also like to slow shit down once in a while and get a bit angry. They include a lot of distant backing guitar melodies that accompany the wailing chords and hectic crash cymbal hits, all in all combining for a very unique sound.
I haven’t even spoken about the vocals. Crushing. Manic, screeching highs are mixed with bassy lows, resembling the horn of a reaper come to eradicate all life. However…the lows get very lost in the mix. Most of the time they are completely indiscernible, which is a shame, because with a little bit of production work they could come right the forefront of the mix and people would no doubt be blown away.
The highs are mixed fine, coming across clearly and extremely jarring - which is not a bad thing. The drum work on this release relies heavily on the use of crash and china cymbals, presumably following the classic deathcore drumming sound, but sometimes the repetitive, droning ‘CSHHHHHHH’ of the cymbals becomes a little monotonous and loses it’s appeal. That aside, the drum work is very well done, accompanying the riffs and providing a solid foundation for the rest of the band to build on.
I did enjoy listening to this EP, and for a band that is only just over a year old, this release is extremely promising. They’ve written some killer riffs and their lyrical content is outstanding. However, it needs work. A few of the songs on the album left me feeling underwhelmed, with the band choosing style over substance. Fear not though…they are young and have time. Remember the name.