Review by Michael on March 21, 2023.
Open fire!! From the very first second, the new Discreation album Iron Times slaughters everything and everyone who gets in its way. The title Iron Times also sums up the album's thematic content pretty well - since February 2022, what could be better than to dig out and deal with the good and never-ending topic of war again? In times where Europe is rearming like not since World War II to defend itself against Russia, a truly fitting title.
Musically, the guys have also done a lot. Since their old singer Marco Reitz, who had been with the band since 2016, is no longer on board, but none other than Marc Grewe, who some may still know as the ex-Morgoth or Insidious Disease singer, has taken over the vocals, the sound has also become a bit brighter. This means that the guitars are no longer tuned as low as on the previous albums and sound a bit more like old Morgoth.
Discreation goes full throttle from the beginning. The title track is initially an arrow-fast wrecking ball without compromise, whereby definitely some thrash elements to be found. Especially the staccato riffs are very reminiscent of Slayer in places. However, in order not to fall into monotony, the guys let go of the gas pedal and waltz in a short mid-tempo intermezzo everything flat. Take a short breath and then the hell ride continues. But even if the quartet doesn't go full throttle, but rather rages around in the mid-tempo range, the whole thing comes across as completely convincing. 'Bringer Of Demise' is almost a doom waltz, which impresses with densely strung together, brutal riffs and spreads a threatening, if not oppressive mood through the very atmospheric/epic keyboards. Another thing is Marc's voice, which has lost nothing in freshness and aggressiveness in the last 30 years. With 'Maschinenkrieg' (only the title and parts of the chorus are in German) guys go even into black metal realms, as you can hear especially in the tremolo riffs. Also the drumming reminds here and there of black metal, especially with the blast beats. The song is in no way inferior to bands from the genre that use war as a central theme and is one of the most brutal songs on Iron Times. In stark contrast to this brutality 'Deus Lo Vult' happens, which may be convincing with many atmospheric parts (keyboards) and spoken word passages and slightly slowed down pace. This is something that can often go wrong, but it does well here.
With 'Mercenary' and 'I Am The Sword' Discreation covers two bands. Personally, I find 'Mercenary' one of the weakest Bolt Thrower albums (though it's still better than much else released in the genre) and probably would have covered something else, but the song is well done and close to the original. 'I Am The Sword' is from Motörhead's 1993 album "Bastards" and turned out pretty cool. Sure Marc's vocals sound the same as always, but this thing is pretty fun, rocks like hell and is a worthy ending to a very good album.
Iron Times is all-around convincing album from the cover to the production and from songwriting to the performance of the musicians. Good job!!!
Rating: 9 out of 101.45k