Deströyer 666 - Phoenix Rising
Season Of Mist
Blackened Death/Thrash Metal
8 songs (40:08)
Release year: 2000
Deströyer 666, Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Crims
Archive review

They’re now calling Holland their home, Deströyer 666 , originally from Australia, has taken the extreme Metal world by the throat with their three full-lengths and various EPs. The combination of all things extreme in Metal (Black, Death, and Thrash) makes for a CD that is full of brutality, intensity, and subtle melodies that remains original thanks to unique production and fantastic song writing. This is Phoenix Rising and if you’re an extreme Metal fan and don’t own a Deströyer 666 CD then read on.

Phoenix Rising is successful on many fronts. There are enough catchy Black Metal riffs and crushing Death Metal double bass runs to please the Metal fan who likes their music quick and to the point… something that can sink in right away. At the same time, the fan that likes little intricacies and subtle technical sections will find a lot to like here as well. There’s very liberal use of double bass, along with plenty of blasts that are used behind both Death and Black riffs. Meanwhile, the riffs are all over the place, encompassing every conceivable style of extreme Metal, though some might say Black Metal is the most prominent with Death not far behind (this would be true as there are two songs that are almost entirely Black Metal riffs). The song writing is strong enough that you never really notice all the changes though. You’re enjoying the music so much you don’t stop to think, “oh, they’re using a Black Metal riff now”, instead you’re just constantly head banging or whatever you do when the music is so good it just takes control of you. To back up the extreme riffs are on insane amount of leads. Some are long, while others are quick spurts, but as the title track shows, there’s always something going on in the music, and that something is usually plenty of ripping leads.

Song writing styles on this release are rather varied. The shortest track is 2:25 (yes, it’s a real song) while some tracks are longer passing the 6:30 mark twice. The first of which is I Am The Wargod. This song has no vocals until 2:30 into the song and contains what is possibly one of the best build ups I’ve ever heard. Meanwhile, Lone Wolf Winter has many very different sections that culminate in the only part of the CD where clean vocals are used. These clean vocals brought to memory thoughts of some Viking Metal bands and eventually the harsh vocals double the clean. This is a great example of the song writing on this CD. The reason being is that Deströyer 666 like to use typical conventions in their music, but the trick is that they bring on these conventions at the best moments. When you hope that a certain awesome riff had double bass behind it for maximum head bang potential, Deströyer 666 will deliver. When you hope that they’d ease off of an extended vocal section with a killer lead they will deliver. I think you get the point. The listening experience might be different for you but for me Phoenix Rising just seemed to have the perfect timing for everything they do to the point that I can listen to this CD over and over again with the overall effect never lessening.

A big factor in the bands sound is also the production. There are certain bands that just have such a distinct sound that there is never any mistaking them, and Deströyer 666 on Phoenix Rising is one such band. The guitar tone and drum sound is great. This definitely has one of the best bass drum sounds around (and the snare is not bad at all either) and the guitars, in both the heavy riffs and higher toned Black Metal riffs department, have such a gritty, dirty, but strong tone. It’s one of those guitar sounds that you play to your Nu-Metal friends who think Papa Roach is the heaviest band around and then you let the power of the riffs destroy their inner poser. Just in the same way you older guys would play The Priest or Manowar to your friends (or enemies) whose favorite “Metal band” was Poison.

It has already been established that with the exception of the clean vocal section at the end of Lone Wolf Winter the vocals are entirely harsh. I wouldn’t have it any other way though. The vocals are kind of in between Black and Death, being more mid-range than deep. They also tend to be sung quite fast with phrasing that goes perfectly with the rhythm of the music (if the music is fast, the vocals are fast and in perfect timing, same goes for mid-paced tempos). In fact, take away the harsh style, and you basically have classic Thrash styled vocals most of the time. The result is vocals that are constantly accentuating the aggressiveness of the music, like they should be, and as a bonus they lyrics can be understood without the booklet in most cases.

As you could probably tell this is one of my favorite CDs and there are three songs on here (Phoenix Rising, I Am The Wargod, and Lone Wolf Winter) that are some of my favorite of all time. Though the fans that like Deströyer 666 like them a lot, they’re still an underappreciated band as people see the name and think they play corny Black Metal usually. Obviously this is not the case at all. If you’re looking for a band that combines some of the best elements of Black, Death and Thrash, and that can flawlessly write simpler music and more epic music on the same CD than look no further. The debut, Unchain The Wolves is also an excellent CD and you’d be doing yourself a huge favor by picking up both CDs.

Killing Songs :
Rise Of The Predator, Phoenix Rising, I Am The Wargod, Lone Wolf Winter, Ride The Solar Wind, The Birth Of Tragedy
Crims quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Deströyer 666 that we have reviewed:
Deströyer 666 - Defiance reviewed by Charles and quoted 89 / 100
Deströyer 666 - Cold Steel for an Iron Age reviewed by Charles and quoted 90 / 100
7 readers voted
Your quote was: 100.
Change your vote

There are 9 replies to this review. Last one on Wed Feb 23, 2005 2:11 pm
View and Post comments