Lair Of The Minotaur
4/25/2006 - Review by: Eric Compton
Lair Of The Minotaur - Ultimate Destroyer - 2006 - Southern Lord
This Chicago band comes armed to the teeth, with this new album being their follow-up to the critically acclaimed debut aptly titled "Carnage". On this new record the band practice and perfect the sounds of old Metallica, Venom, Slayer, and of course Black Sabbath through nine healthy cuts of bombastic heaviness and wonder. With metal thrashin' mad cuts like the title track, Lair Of The Minotaur present to you their bastard child, their vision of speed versus groove, their monumental desire to create that epic doom monolith while still staggering the listeners with sheer speed. From the gate the group showoff a massive, doom laden hook firmly embraced by the backbone known as speed metal. On the opening cut, "Juggernaut Of Metal", the band run the gauntlet of doom, thrash, and melody, all deeply soaked in the finest of heavy metal brewings. More Sabbath sidewalk slams occur on "The Hydra Coils Upon This Wicked Mountain" as well as the bone shaking decapitation that is "Behead The Gorgon".
Through all of this mayhem and high octane affairs, singer Steven Rathbone goes from death metal rumblings to high pitched screams, almost sounding like Bon Scott plastered to a windshield at 120 miles per hour. While the whole album is obviously firmly rooted in the halls of metal's finest, I can still hear that sonic Swedish sensation sweeping through, almost recalling early Entombed or Unleashed on these cold, extreme riffs. Oddly enough Denmark's Dominus (now turned Volbeat) is the only real comparison I can come up with, as this record somewhat resembles the melodic death spectacle of Dominus' "The First 9".
Bottom Line - Highly recommended for fans of heavy metal. If there is a record heavier than this, then I have simply never heard it.
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