Doomed to Inherit (Olympic)
by Paul Lee
Those scary bastards of Divine Empire (ex-members of Malevolent Creation) have unleashed a relentless new album that sets them apart from the usual brutal but banal U.S. death metal. Incorporating some black metal flourishes along with more intricate song structures, Divine Empire have created a more devastating album than their previous slab of morbid violence, Redemption (which I gave a positive review to back in ’96). Dual-vocal death metal acts like these maniacs are typically more destructive and diverse than the single vox variety and this adds to DE’s excellence. Divine Empire have integrated some of that wonderful European melodic approach (touring with Emperor and Borknagar couldn’t have hurt…) into their more traditional, swamp-infested assault that recalls some of Cannibal Corpse’s recent works. Adding a thundering instrumental, “Birth of Legends,” recalls the glory days of metal and adds to the intensity and variety on Doomed… For fans of both modern death and black metal, you’d do well to sample these hulking freaks and add this vicious selection of songs to your collection.
(1658 N. Milwaukee Ave. #245 Chicago, IL 60647)