Deicide The Stench of Redemption

With the abrupt departure of founding guitarists Eric and Brian Hoffman, it looked as if after nearly 20 years Deicide might have met their demise. Keeping with the pummelling nature of their music, Glen Benton and Steve Asheim were unwilling to relent on their attack, continuing to plough forward despite a pending lawsuit and major setback. Replacing the brothers are two of death metal’s finest axe men: ex-Cannibal Corpse genius Jack Owen and Ralph Santolla of Death and Iced Earth. They compellingly and aptly fill the gap left behind, taking Deicide a long ways from their Earache debut and most recent effort, The Scars of the Crucifix. The Stench sees them revisiting Legion territory with better sound and musicianship. Older fans are going to be very, very pleased with the return to the high speed, visceral brutality that made them legendary and influential. Blazing solos materialise throughout the album with an antagonistic flair that commands focus and admiration. Precise hooks and thought provoking grooves add to the high calibre playing, making for an impressive and punishing aural assault. Deicide’s metamorphosis is nothing short of spectacular and it’s almost guaranteed nobody is going to miss the Hoffmans. (Earache)