Dear Desolation shows one of Australia’s heavies at the forefront of their creative medium.
Hailing from Blacktown, New South Wales, the now unstoppable force that is Thy Art Is Murder continue to break skulls on their fourth full-length LP, Dear Desolation. In spite of a lineup muddle featuring the departure and subsequent re-joining of vocalist CJ McMahon, it doesn’t really sound like the band has lost any creative momentum, always showcasing a knack for brutality as they continue to prioritise their own heaviness throughout the genre.
Opener ‘Slaves Beyond Death’ kicks off the album with groove-saturated riffs courtesy of Andy Marsh that lends the song a sense of playfulness before bombarding listeners into submission via Lee Stanton’s double-kick pedals, who remains the backbone of Thy Art’s wall of sound.
CJ’s vocals are as monstrous as ever, defiantly growling “Terror. Forever.” on the likes of ‘Puppet Master’ as Stanton pummels away at his kick pedals. Despite showcasing breakdowns aplenty, it’s apparent Thy Art are attempting to transition away from Deathcore to a more Death Metal territory, with the eponymous ‘Dear Desolation’ being an experiment in ever-building momentum that coalesces into a climactic breakdown partnered by Marsh’s menacing riffs.
‘The Skin Of The Serpent’ eschews the formula, relying more on its use of a harrowing, melodic break, which ushers in the subsequent breakdown. Disappointingly, the tail end of the album sounds slightly more homogenous, with riffs and breakdowns that regrettably aren’t as eyebrow-raising as they deserve, but luckily the album ends on a wholly positive note, with the aptly titled ‘The Final Curtain’ boasting blistering riffs and signature heaviness from Stanton.
Certain songs have a tendency to bleed together a little, and there could be a little more in the way of variation, but it’s laden with crushing riffs, breakdowns and remains as heavy as one of those Willy Wonka kids. Fans looking to satiate their hunger for the heavy will most certainly find the Blacktown quintet’s recent outing an appropriate offering, as Dear Desolation stands triumphantly as the bands finest LP to date.
Dre’s Top Three:
- Slaves Beyond Death
- Dear Desolation
- The Skin Of The Serpent
You can pick up your copy of Dear Desolation on CD or Vinyl here.