The 13th Beast
Review by Elijah on January 7, 2020.
Malevolent Creation is just one of those different death metal bands with their own style, which makes them stand out more in the underground community. Most death metal releases these days are simply just alright, but this album here is ruthless in every way possible. This album shows that MC are back yet again with more brutality and more fresh music.
With every release onwards starting with In Cold Blood, the band has been trying to find that definite sound that completely describes Malevolent Creation. Every album has been unique and different in their own ways while also maintaining the same feel and style. They do great job at making some solid death metal, none of the albums prior to this one are bad at all, but at the same time, none of them perfectly describe the definite style and feel of Malevolent Creation just yet. Not until 2019, this record here is outstanding! The 13th Beast is exactly what the band has been trying to sound like their whole discography, but haven't reached it yet, till now! Every track is new, has variety, energy, creativity, great songwriting skills, and nothing gets boring. This album is the complete package for modern death metal!
Here we have the usual Malevolent Creation transformed with the modern death metal style & sound, but produced, written, and presented better. Again, not saying their previous releases are bad, which they arent, I'm saying with this album, they took everything from their previous albums and made it five times better! This album is seriously the best of 2019 hands down. After 12 albums going back and forth with release, the band has completely matured into their truest sound, this lives up to all their other albums. If you're a big Malevolent fan, this'll never fail to grab your attention.
Let’s talk about the songs. Every song has its own hook that grabs you in with its ultimate heaviness and keeps you entertained until the song ends. With production this good, you'll be sure to appreciate the songs. Like always, the band has good songwriting skills, and damn, they've definitely improved it more on this release. Every song takes it's time with itself and never goes beyond expectation or ability, which is the perfect way to write an album. It's best to let every song transcend and flow so that every track can be special and outstanding, and not too similar. And once again, with production this outstanding, how can you not enjoy this? This is sheer perfection, especially since it's 2019. Malevolent has always stayed to true to themselves and this album proves just that. The drums, just brilliant. The snare and bass drum are sounded to perfection, it matches the modern death metal aesthetic while it also matches the guitar sound and feel of the whole album. I'm so glad this album is this great. The drums don’t sound fully modern and overproduced, which is what I love the most about them. The snare is solid enough to go with the album, nothing more, nothing less. This album wouldn't be good if the snare sounded any different than this. These guys get major points for not overproducing the drums and making them sound perfect and not too modernized like most other 2010's- death metal releases.
The guitar work is great; the sound of the guitar is just perfect. Not too high, low, gritty, stale, none of that. It's exactly how pure death metal guitar should sound; open, expansive, free-handed, and unburied. The guitar sound here is just beyond words perfect. I can’t put into words how purely death metal these guitars are, I've never heard the most absolute perfect guitar sound in death metal ever until I came across this album. Bass guitar is also very present here. So glad to hear more bass in metal these days, in this album you can always hear the bass, the guitar and drums never ever bury it, this makes for an absolutely great listening experience. If you can hear the bass, you can hear everything else, it creates the best feeling ever, good bass is what makes an album good. I swear if this album lacked the bass it has, it would not be good. The bass here backs up every note perfectly and follows along with the guitar patterns greatly, never missing a note, thus again making this an amazing listening experience, the bass guitar on this album is such a big pleasure!
Another one of the greatest things about this album, the relentless, bone-crushing vocals. Sadly, Brett Hoffman passed away and has made his vocal style very known, that if you hear a song with him, you'll instantly know. His style of vocals (to me) is like a loud chant mixed with low growling, like a command chant sound, but more with growling. The new vocalist that has been with the band since 2017 is doing a great job sounding exactly like Brett. I didn't even know Brett didn't do vocals on this album until I came on here and looked at the lineup, I'm legit shocked because I didn't know it wasn’t Brett, that's how much of a damn good job Lee Wollenschlaeger did on this album. OUTSTANDING vocal performance that truly does live up to the remembrance of Mr. Hoffman, which this album is all about, a tribute to the almighty man himself. Perfectly matching his vocal style is instant respect.
To recap this whole thing, The 13th Beast is an absolute perfect album that proves everything it is. A tribute to their long-time vocalist Brett Hoffman, it being literally a "13th beast", because it’s such a beast of an album, etc. And let me point out again, this is THE greatest death metal album of the year, I swear. Nothing else can beat the absolute greatness of this record, everything that it is has been lived up to. I yearn for more albums like these especially since it's 2019, and lots of albums these days tend to be overproduced, which here, it isn’t at all. This is pure greatness, and this shows the diversity between talent and popularity in modern death metal.
If you want a ruthless and amazing modern death metal album, I 100% suggest you listen to this album. Nothing about it is bad in any way, I swear you WILL NOT waste your time with this release.
Rating: 9.5 out of 10698
Review by Death8699 on July 10, 2019.
Turing a different road now that Brett Hoffman has passed on, we're now introduced the Malevolent Creation of a new era. It seems to me that they should've changed their name, but nevertheless it remains the same. The vocals and the music sound like a totally different band. But whatever, this is what it is. I'm not trying to discredit the musicians on this album, it's just that since Brett is gone, it just seems very different. I would say it's for the better because the last few Malevolent Creation albums (to me) weren't the greatest releases that they put forth. The 13th Beast shows us a darker, more morbid revelation.
The music on here is really heavy; a lot of tremolo picking guitars and blast beating. It's probably a heavier songwriting that they've shown here. That's pretty good that they still have the fire and their newest addition to the band Lee wants a different direction for the band. It seems that they want to keep it heavy and morbid. He has big shoes to fill but I think he did a great job. A person listening to this that knows Malevolent Creation wouldn't know it's them because of the change only until you reveal it to the person. But still, Lee's vocals are grim, and it fits well with their guitar riffs.
I believe this band is in a new era. They will keep the same name but no more of The 10 Commandments or anything like that. Lee's on guitars and it seems like his ideas for the music is super heavy and thick, I believe that they really needed someone like him to fill the shoes and develop death metal in its purest form. The tempos vary, even though there's a lot of blasting in the first few songs but at times they slow it down with pure brutality. I'd have to say this is one of their heaviest albums yet. Now that's a bold statement to make, but Lee turns everything around with his approach to the music and vocals.
I like this version of Malevolent Creation. Some bands turn stale as they move onto record and record. These guys have a while till they call it quits, as long as they continue to make albums like this, they'll win over my contribution to their CD's. The music is uncompromising, the vocals are deeper than Brett's, the production quality is superb and the mixing just right. I would make the suggestion to listen to this first before you make a purchase of the CD to see if you like them now that Brett's gone. You may like the direction musically and the fact that they're even more brutal now!
Rating: 8.5 out of 10698