God Dethroned Under the Sign of the Iron Cross

God Dethroned Under the Sign of the Iron Cross
The stellar 2009 effort, Passiondale, from Dutch blackened death metal masters God Dethroned, was a concept album based on the Battle of Passchendaele during World War I. Now, with Under the Sign of the Iron Cross, frontman Henri Sattler and company further their WWI theme with brutaler force, telling the stories of different battles during the conflict. The result is a sound much grimmer than Passiondale, with even more intense, carving riffs and blitzkrieg blast-beat drumming. Tracks like "Chaos Reigns at Dawn," "Fire Storm" and "The Killing is Faceless" are battering assaults of extreme metal madness, but it's the title track that stands out most. The melodies on the song soar to tremendous heights and, as on Passiondale, Marco van de Velde (of fellow Dutch band the Wounded) provides the clean vocals. After 20 years, despite all the member changes, it's clear that God Dethroned have maintained their edge. (Metal Blade)