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Shadow Music Ryan Harding Review by
Ryan Harding
Full Moon Productions

ANGEL CORPSE, KRISIUN, HATE ETERNAL, and the like are establishing new guidelines for death metal. The most obvious is that your aggression must never wane. CENTURIAN is certainly up to the task of this new violence.

The foursome from Holland bridge the gap between MORBID ANGEL and DEICIDE with less patience and more precision than the latter. This is their first full length, but it’s the product of a band who is quite ready to be named with the elite.

I’m doing this from a promo and don’t have their names, but let’s begin with the vocals. They take the majority of their influence from DEICIDE with frequent overdubs, but don’t come off as derivitive. They are very strong while remaining coherent. "Damned and Dead" sets the pace, with its mutiple blasts and technical rhythms. "The Law of Burning" benefits from a lot of solid double bass work with some of the album's craziest riffs.

The interesting thing about the album's intensity it that while it never slacks off, it increases noticably as the album progresses, especially the second half. The five minute songs back away for the shorter and swifter "Soultheft" and "Cross of Fury." You'll notice the album's cover art is hand-drawn and painted. You may not know the band did it with their own blood. They definitely aren't hoping to make a name through shock value, as the album embodies sincerity. CENTURIAN delivers true death metal, a must-have release. You get forty plus minutes of almost overwhelming extremity. We can only hope more bands will follow the example.


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This review copyright 2000 E.C.McMullen Jr.

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