Genre: Death Metal
Country: USA
Label: Nuclear Blast
Year: 2017

Four years after their last release (“Kingdom of Conspiracy”, 2013), one of the most consistent and stable-performing bands, the undeniably huge, in value and history American Death Metallers, Immolation, returned with their new album entitled “Atonement”. It is the tenth album of the band, in almost 30 years of record career.

From a purely musical standpoint, “Atonement” proves undeniably that Immolation is still on the list of the most productive and non-boring Death Metal bands. I truly believe that Immolation have a blessed well in their studio that acts as a fathomless source of ideas. The main feature of this release is that Immolation have reduced their spike just a bit in their tracks. The alternations between fast and slower parts add complexity to the final result and introduce to the audience and long term fans of Immolation a new aspect of their character. Of course, no one said Immolation relaxed. The album is a manifestation of extreme aggression and a drowning atmosphere, with the band taking care of everything with special care. Dolan’s filthy vocals, Shalaty’s wicked strikes and the disastrous guitars of Bouks and Vigna offer what we all expected. The guitars are robust, emitting massiveness, balancing between fast and mid tempo rhythms, with many of the characteristic turns and breaks of the band still here. On top of that, there is a special groove in the pieces that makes your body move, making “Atonement” a personal affair of everyone. As for Shalaty’s drum patterns, we would say that they are quite lively and adventurous, supporting amazingly the compositions. Good technicality and careful blasts tie with the rest of the orchestration, as well as a more exploratory essence, in the sense that he does not stick to obsolete structures but is ‘looking for’ the best possible result are strikingly evident. Well, for Dolan and his performance, what can i say? Fatal outbursts. The atmosphere that’s built, doesn’t escape the band’s norm, since its unique dark feel makes you shiver at times, especially at the slower guitar parts.

A scowling thought I did while I was listening to the album at one point is that the fact that Immolation have toned down with “Atonement”, something that along with the groove that the compositions have, make the album more accessible, more easily understood by the wider audience, so the band’s target group is automatically broader.

In a few lines, “Atonement” is a very creative record that may create feelings of commonality or foresight at first contact, but if you listen to the compositions elaborately, you will understand that this is not the case.

The album includes 11 new tracks and a re-recording of “Immolation”, which originally released the Dawn Of Possession, a total of 49 minutes.

“Atonement” was released on February 24 via Nuclear Blast. It was recorded at Millbrook Sound Studios in Millbrook, New York.

5/6