This record is brutal from the opening and it stays that way.
Morbid Angel has existed in some form since 1983. They are one of the most influential bands in the metal genre because their unique style transitioned thrash to death metal.
I remember when I first heard of the band. It was early in my college career. I sat behind this country looking dude. I never really talked to him. One day he came into class all excited and asked, “Have you heard Blessed Are the Sick yet?” I was shocked. Was this hillbilly actually talking about metal? “What’s that, the name of a band or something?” I responded. The guy got really serious. “No man. It’s the name of an album by a band called Morbid Angel. It’s fucking sick bro. They’ll be your new favorite band.” I daydreamed through the rest of the class thinking about Morbid Angel. I picked up the album after school and spent the rest of the day telling people how great it was. That was 1991.
Since that time, I’ve followed Morbid Angel closely. I own all of their albums and I believe I can say with some authority, Morbid Angel is back! Kingdoms Disdained might be one of the most straight forward records the band has ever released. There are no instrumental passages. This record is brutal from the opening and it stays that way.
I will admit that it took me a couple of listens before I fully appreciated Kingdoms Disdained and I feel like I understand it even more now that I’ve heard the instrumental EP, Extreme Acid Terror. There are multi-layers to this attack that are more evident with the vocals removed. This form of Morbid Angel boasts a sound all to its own.
Although I will always appreciate David Vincent as a vocalist, Tucker’s delivery is more aggressive and every bit as satanic. I don’t know about you but I imagine the devil as a muscle bound freak. Someone you would never want to fuck with. Steve Tucker emulates that aura of violence.
While detractors of this version of Morbid Angel will be quick to say that the band took a step back resuming the sound they’d been exploring prior to ILLVD DIVINVM INSANVS, I say you haven’t been listening. This is the best Morbid Angel album in years. The subtle entanglement of complex passages brings a whole new level of maturity to a band that’s been pioneering the death metal genre for years. Highlight tracks for me are: “Garden of Disdain”, “Architect and Iconoclast”, “Paradigms Warped”, “For No Master”, “From the Hands of Kings” and “The Fall of Idols”.
Morbid Angel are:
- Steve Tucker – Bass, Vocals
- Scott Fuller – Drums
- Trey Azagthoth – Guitars
- Dan Vadim Von – Guitars