Acephalix – Deathless Master


Review by Jason Guest

Fucking hell! Album number two from the Bay Area’s Acephalix is just vile, raw, and twisted d-beat-dominated death metal destruction. Where their 2010 debut, Aporia, left off is exactly where Deathless Master picks up. ‘Bastard Self’ (what a title!) opens with the same chords that many a death metal band have milked for their might many a time, but Acephalix have arrived to show them what they should have been doing with them all along. Blending (or should that be hacking?) this trait together with a slower but no less heavier mid-section and a couple of wrist-breaking riffs inject into the very heart of the track an angry amphetamine shot. The psychopathic lunacy that this first track epitomises bleeds into the title track, the contaminated crust infecting the rest of the album for eight tracks that are deranged and, well, just fucking filthy.

Keeping the songs simple and raw in terms of structure and production and keeping the technical aspect in check may not work for some but throughout Deathless Master, Acephalix have rammed into thirty minutes what it takes many twice as long to do. Kyle’s guitar work provides a number of surprises, taking turns in the direction of the unpredictable in both the riffs and the lead breaks. Luca’s bass rumbles along with its trebly edge sharpened by a jagged distortion underpinning the fetid mix. Benson’s machine gun drum beats do their job in shooting the tracks violently and remorselessly down your throat. And Dan’s indecipherable guttural grunts are, frankly, fantastic and like Obituary act as another instrument that enhance the full sonic impact of the tracks, the band as a whole instead of one member and the music becoming the focal point. That there’s little in the way of variation across the album combined with an apparent lack of originality no doubt means nothing to the band. And it should mean even less to you. If ever the definition of savage, brutal, or destruction becomes unclear, one listen to this will clear up any ambiguity. This is filthy death metal that makes no excuses. And neither should you. Get it.

8 out of 10

Track Listing:

  1. Bastard Self
  2. Deathless Master
  3. Tombs Of Our Fathers
  4. On Wings…
  5. Raw Life
  6. Blood Of Desire
  7. In the Arms of Nothing
  8. The Hunger

Click here to download ‘On Wings…’ free from Southern Lord Records