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THE DESTROYERS OF ALL

Ulcerate

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal


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Ulcerate The Destroyers Of All album cover
3.60 | 16 ratings | 3 reviews | 20% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Burning Skies (7:34)
2. Dead Oceans (7:01)
3. Cold Becoming (6:16)
4. Beneath (6:56)
5. The Hollow Idols (6:06)
6. Omens (8:26)
7. The Destroyers Of All (10:30)

Total Time: 52:49


Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Paul Kelland / bass, vocals
- Michael Hoggard / guitar
- Jamie Saint Merat / drums, percussion

Releases information

Full-length, Willowtip Records, January 25th, 2011

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The Destroyers of AllThe Destroyers of All
Willowtip Records 2011
Audio CD$6.98
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ULCERATE The Destroyers Of All ratings distribution


3.60
(16 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
20%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(33%)
33%
Good, but non-essential (33%)
33%
Collectors/fans only (7%)
7%
Poor. Only for completionists (7%)
7%

ULCERATE The Destroyers Of All reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Conor Fynes
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 'The Destroyers Of All' - Ulcerate (8/10)

Although much extreme metal being released nowadays seems to be content with emulating the works of past giants, there will always be those bands out there that try to turn the concept of a given genre on its side and redfine what it can do. Although this can sometimes lead to peril for the band, when done well, it leads to a fair deal of excitement, as is the case with New Zealanders Ulcerate and their latest work, entitled 'The Destroyers Of All'. While it is made clear from the highly distorted riffs, technical drumming and deep growls that this is indeed a death metal record, Ulcerate crosses the boundaries more than once, creating a work that has many of the characteristics of the prescribed genre, but still manages to skim the edge of something different altogether.

When listening to 'The Destroyers Of All', the biggest thing I notice are the guitars. For much death metal, I find that the main purpose of the riffs is to add to heaviness and- in many cases- the technical aspect of the music. Ulcerate is different in this aspect for the fact that the guitar work here is neither particularly brutal throughout, or fast-paced. Although it would be foolish to say that there aren't some looming moments to offer here, the guitars instead offer sounds that rely more on dissonant chord structures, complex timbres and eerie use of feedback. From my personal musical background, the closest thing Ulcerate's guitar work here sounds like is the latter period of Deathspell Omega; experimental, atonal, creepy and sometimes downright disconcerting in nature. All of this works in Ulcerate's favour. When first oging into this record that seemed to have people so excited, I was not expecting something other than a typical (albeit good) death metal record, and the band proved me wrong.

Apart from the relatively experimental guitar work, the rest of Ulcerate is fairly straightforward for the death metal genre. Some great technical drum work of Jamie Saint Merat and washed out but functional bass playing fills out the rest of the sound with the added heaviness the guitars didn't seem to worry about. The most generic thing about the band are the vocals however. While Paul Kelland is a fair enough growler, his grunts here lack the power and emotion to add much to the music.

Ulcerate's 'The Destroyer Of All' is therefore a fairly interesting creature for death metal. With equal parts death metal and something else altogether, the band has crafted an hour's worth of dissonant music that certainly grinds against the nerves at times, but for the time being, the album has given me back some faith into what I perceived was a dying genre.

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Send comments to Conor Fynes (BETA) | Report this review (#426505) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, April 02, 2011

Review by Prog Sothoth
COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
3 stars The first expectation I get when I'm told a band plays "technical death metal" is that of a flurry of perpetual noodling riffs, arpeggios, and sweeps backed by constant blast beats and a crystal clear sterile production. Oh yeah, and death grunts...gotta have those. This Ulcerate album is certainly technical and most definately death metal, but does not follow the "tech-death" blueprint by any means. Ulcerate here seperate themselves from other bands of their chosen genre by not concentrating on how fast one can play a riff, but on the riff and note selections themselves. By utilizing strings not often bothered with concerning metal rhythms, there's a complexity to the chord progressions that make for some creative passages and an actual atmosphere that's rather psychedelic at times. Higher registered guitar notes chime for long durations, ringing and interweaving with heavier chord progressions both tonal and atonal to achieve a broad expansive sound, heavy as hell yet vast and sweeping. The drummer is inventive as well; blast beats are not in short supply, but often the tempo is slow and varied in time signatures. There are mellow moments found admist this propulsive entitiy, as if the band's mothers roamed into the recording studio and told their sons to "turn down that racket". The band shifts to a sparse & less distorted sound while still retaining their distinct vibe, until after a minute when their mothers leave and the amps go back to 11. The title track has an especially interesting mellow section where an almost chiming guitar reminds me of a mellotron...it's an imaginative moment by Michael Hoggard, followed by an explosive segment that comes across as overwhelming due to the atmosphere provided beforehand.

Vocals are an issue. Standard death growls with little variation in pitch or style. They contribute to the music as adding an almost mechanical quality to the music...a angry yet soulless delivery. The other issue would be the lack of distinction between songs, which tends to be a common gripe concerning extreme metal albums. The first and last songs to me have the most impact and are actually quite memorable, but the other five tracks, although well made as individual pieces, tend to blend into one another as Ulcerate uses their weird chord techniques in every song, resulting in a 'sameness' that begins to get irritating until the final track redeems The Destroyers Of All.

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Send comments to Prog Sothoth (BETA) | Report this review (#429052) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, April 08, 2011

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "The Destroyers of All" is the 3rd full-length studio album by New Zealand, Auckland based death metal act Ulcerate. The album was released in January 2011 by Willowtip Records. Iīve followed Ulcerate since the release of their debut album "Of Fracture and Failure (2007)", which is an album I really enjoyed. The bandīs sophomore release "Everything Is Fire (2009)" incorporated post metal elements to the bandīs signature dissonant brutal death metal sound, but while the album certainly is a both well played, well composed and well produced affair, it somehow didnīt completely click with me like the debut did. So I wasnīt sure what to expect after I learned about the release of "The Destroyers of All".

The band have settled on a three-piece lineup. There have been no changes in the lineup since "Everything Is Fire" and I think itīs obvious when listening to the music on "The Destroyers of All", that there is now continuety in the way things are done. "The Destroyers of All" is not a copy of "Everything Is Fire" by any means though and Ulcerate have challenged themselves and their fans greatly on this new release.

The music is still a twisted, dissonant, cacophonous sounding version of brutal technical death metal which at its roots is greatly influenced by Gorguts and their extremely influential "Obscura (1998)" album. Thereīs also a strong influence in the music from the dissonant structured chaos of experimental black metal acts like Deathspell Omega and Blut Aus Nord. The post metal elements, which were introduced on "Everything Is Fire", are even more prominent on "The Destroyers of All" and something that rivals the bleak depressive atmosphere of mid-nineties Neurosis is a big part of Ulcerateīs sound.

The band seamlessly blend all influences and music styles into a sound of their own and itīs actually one of the biggests strengths of "The Destroyers of All". It all sounds very natural and like the band do this with ease. Thatīs of course just another testament to the extremely high level of musicianship on display here. Ulcerate are a tremendously talented bunch. Not only does the music feature odd time-signatures, loads of tempo shifts and worldclass technical precision drumming, but the very core of what makes music great IMO, is very much present on this album too. Songwriting that challenges, moves you and gives you a kick in the butt when thatīs needed is something Ulcerate masters to perfection. Sure the vocals are a tiny bit one-dimensional. The deep growling vocals seldom leave much of an emotional impact, but they actually fit well with the generally bleak atmosphere. The intrumental part of the music is dynamic and can take you from blasting technical chaos to bleak slow post metal parts in seconds. The song structures are adventurous and the album is definitely not an easy listening experience.

Personally itīs taken me a couple of months to fully crack the code to the music, and I anticipate that itīs an album that will always challenge and puzzle me. Itīs the kind of album where Iīll never be completely familiar with all details and therefore itīs an album that will provide me with endless hours of discovery and listening pleasure. "The Destroyers of All" has so far been one of the most interesting new albums Iīve listened to in 2011 and a 4 - 4.5 star rating is fully deserved.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#467832) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, June 23, 2011

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