Malevolent Creation – Invidious Dominion

By Ola Mazzuca

Its no surprise that a headbanger growing up in rural Ontario aspires to be the next Trey Azagthoth after experiencing definitive releases from the likes of Death and Morbid Angel. They are intrigued by that orange juice drenched death metal that has established a signature sound for decades, which seems entirely unattainable for them as they sit by a frosted window, peering outside at the -30° Celsius weather before them, shredding away on a vintage Jackson with a vision of their debut in the sunshine state.

In reality location doesn’t pose as a factor for reaching fame in heavy metal music, for who would have thought that the warm and retired state of Florida could spawn an array of the world’s finest death metal next to Gothenburg, Sweden? Thus, here is Malevolent Creation with their eleventh studio album since The Ten Commandments.

Invidious Dominion does not exactly fall flat, but nearly hits the ground as the intro immediately sets a vague tone. Though it lacks excitement, “United Hate” allows one to interpret all the right moves for moshing as it is fit for live shows. However unoriginal, “Compulsive Facebreaker” and “Slaughterhouse” embody suitable titles. In contrast, “Born Again Hard” brings forth tasty guitar work by Phil Fasciana while “Corruptor” has enjoyably chugging riffs.

Rather than being labeled a horrible listen, this album is simply unsatisfying. After listening to tracks from Malevolent’s previous studio release, Doomsday X, it seems that something is missing. Depth is absent, vocals lack vigor and there is nothing audibly fresh in terms of musicality. It is surprising that such a well-respected band produced a not so shocking release. Maybe this proves that the more expectations we hold based on the previous success of an artist can somewhat backfire and leave some extra space for that new axe-wielding skid in town.

(Nuclear Blast)

Rating: 6

Sean Palmerston

Sean is the founder/publisher of Hellbound.ca; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.