Godless Rising Trumpet of Triumph

For album number three, the extremely evil, unholy and unwashed Godless Rising have somewhat perplexingly added the power metal/solo wanking talents of ex-Onward guitarist Toby Knapp to the mix. What results is a strange and awesome combo of guitar virtuoso (see the runs in "Ungodly Incantations") and pure cult blackened death ("Devour the Cross"). It's like the Hell's Headbangers back catalogue reissued by Steve Vai's Favoured Nations label, given some extra boost by studio guitarists paid (minimum wage) to make sense of the noise. The end result is one-half old school death, one-quarter modern raw black thrash and one-quarter guitar dude rubbing one out down at the pawnshop. And he's good. But he's a bit out of place, no? Knapp brings in some cool, haunting melodies, like during opener "Where Is Your God." But he leaves things alone enough that it's mainly just brutal through and through, as it should be. (Moribund)