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Review: Voice of Ruin – Purge and Purify

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From Nyon, Switzerland, Voice of Ruin have recently released ‘Purge and Purify’ through Tenacity Music. Though the band’s style can accommodate several genres, it is clear that they will definitely strike a chord with fans of Lamb of God, Devildriver, Slipknot, and Arch Enemy. Having listened to the album many times, I see nothing but potential in the band’s future.

The opening song “Disgust” is a thrash track that sounds like Slayer is fronted by a death metal/core vocalist. It actually works really well and has all the dark and gritty elements that made the Slayer albums unique to other thrash bands. Gradually however, the song begins to identify the band’s own signature sound through the melodic and rather impressive guitar solos. The song is very easy to listen to, and as such, sounds a lot shorter than it really is. The listeners will be pleased to find just how diverse the songs are on the rest of the album.

Next up is “Horns”, this is a track that allows all the instruments to shine and really challenge anyone that goes ahead and learns the songs. The drums are much like a Muay Thai kickboxer; always keep you wondering what timing they’re going to use and which limb they’re going to throw at you next. The bass fills are very audible, making one wonder how wide his palms are to move so quickly and easily. The guitar riffs and solos are probably one of the best on the album, so much variety between melodic tremolos, and fills. Not a single dull moment.

Moving on to “Blood of Religions”, the track begins with what sounds like a tapping lick and a somewhat punchy drum beat. The vocals and the chord progressions gel really well throughout the song structures, potentially vying for best song on the album. There are a lot of variations of the licks and chord progressions, switching from tremolo picks to simple but effective chugs. Even though this track doesn’t really have a guitar solo, I think this is the most radio-friendly song as this is likely to grab a listener’s attention and keep hold of it from beginning to end.

“Snakes In My Head” has some very bouncy breakdowns in the verses, but the band has done very well to not overuse them. There are several things I appreciate about this band as I’ve already had many thorough listens, but one important thing I should mention is how fresh and inventive they are with their song structures. As I mentioned before, there is never a dull moment, and on this track I was actually trying to pinpoint the moment I could identify a chorus – but then I decided I don’t care – for the whole song is so easy to mosh to and get lost in. I would love to see this band play this song even if it was just a tiny live venue with maybe twenty people for me to shove around.

Having both thrash and groove segments, “All Hail The King” manages to fit in a neoclassical guitar harmony that rings well with the vocals over it. Structurally, the song is well thought out; I am really pleased that they resisted the temptation to continue relying on a thrash segment to kill time with as so many bands regularly do. Excluding the harmonies, I counted three guitar solos on this track alone, and yet it still comes across as modest, not at all sounding like wankery – I remember the days when thrash songs had many solos on them, and not one of them sounded good.

“I confess” has a talking verse that may remind listeners of King 810 or Slipknot’s slower songs. While the riff work is the same for the majority of the song, it is not at all repetitive, the riff work is complemented by screams and guitar solos that will make the listener wonder where the song is heading to next. Where indeed… the bridge is a very dark and brief end with whispers, giving the mental image like the vocalist has stepped into a confessional booth after a very long and jaded journey.

Flowing with a continuous riff is what gives “Voice From The Ruins” a lot of unpredictability as listeners listen to the same riff knowing it is a buildup for something spectacular. It is roughly at 1:09 that the song brings out the chugging and palm-muting segments that give the song (and the vocalist) a very mighty feel. With each passing second, the song progresses better and better as we are greeted with melodic leads, quickened doublekicks and a hook into the guitar solo that inter-twines with the vocals and continues raveling before reaching conclusion. It would seem this band is incapable of making a bad song.

I was worried at the start of “Animal Kingdom” as I thought the clean guitar intro would mean that this would be a soft song, so I was pleasantly surprised to find the song opening with a tasty guitar lick. In this particular song, it is the vocalist who shines the brightest as I get the mental image of him riding a chariot during the verses. However, that is not to say that the others are slouching, for they would be the chariot propelling him forward; ugh, I just resisted describing which instrument would be which part of the chariot…

Coming out charging, “Time for Revenge” sounds remarkably suitable for Lamb of God fans. There are so many time changes, mid-range screams, and even riff interchanges of a similar style. However, the band has successfully made this song their own as it doesn’t sound like just another track on Lamb of God’s earlier albums. For one, the guitar work is very melodic through several segments, particularly the guitar solo. The other, well… the vocalist may have the same first name as Lamb of God’s vocalist, but this Randy sounds a lot more versatile.

Last on the album is “Piracy”. I could talk about how the drummer sounds like a machine through most of the beginning with that solid snare, or how raw and powerful the vocals sound, but it is the guitars that take this cake. The guitar solo is on another level; sweeps, melodic twangs and an effortless hammer-on down the scales – I have to wonder what bands these guitarists were previously in… guitarists this good don’t just hide under a rock. I am really pleased that the last track did not lack in any way, as this is usually the case with most albums.

This whole album has been a great jam. You may have noticed that I have not listed any criticisms or improvement suggestions, and I make no apologies. Voice of Ruin is an amazing band that deserves a great amount of recognition and respect from anyone that likes groove metal, metalcore, deathcore, or melodic death metal. I cannot wait to hear more of their material and I believe I will be adding Purge and Purify to my favorite albums of 2017.

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