PATHOGEN - Forged in the Crucible of Death (OLD TEMPLE - CD 2012)
Previously I have reviewed Pathogen’s demo “Lust of Evil”, and this demo turned out to be a great surprise, as I just didn’t expect anything as awesome from a band coming from Philippines. And here I have Pathogen’s newest full length album (their third already!) and damn; if the demo was good, then “Forged in the Crucible of Death” is just fuckin’ excellent and for me personally this is the best Asian record along with Anatomia’s “Decaying in Obscurity”! And no; it is not an exaggeration! I just really, really like this band’s music and simply cannot say anything wrong about “Forged in the Crucible of Death” – this is a finest example for punked, obscure old school death metal and you shouldn’t worry about the band’s origin; you cannot hear that the band comes from such an exotic country like Philippines and quality wise they certainly match the level of many similar European bands. And in many cases they are even better...
Obviously “Forged in the Crucible of Death” is not a material for National Geographic program; it doesn’t discover anything, it doesn’t create anything what hasn’t been unheard before. But if you think of such death metal cults like Autopsy, Abscess, Repulsion, Nihilist, Death Breath, Master, very early Bolt Thrower, Hellhammer – think of the very archaic, obscure and simple D-beat death metal, which sometimes has the simplicity of punk, but certainly is way more brutal and filthy, as well as faster, then you may know what “Forged in the Crucible of Death” is all about. I really like what Pathogen has done on this album – the material is energetic and will force the maniacal headbanging, but it is also catchy, it is aggressive and more so, it is damn varied as along with many slow and doomy parts you’ll find here also faster songs – but obviously they’re not Krisiun fast, but old school fast, in the way that you know that the drums have been played by a human being, not by octopus and the whole music doesn’t require mathematical formulas to understand it. It is simple, catchy, but I love its atmosphere; that vibe and feeling of horror and Pathogen has done everything perfectly. I must say that I really like the vocals of Willie Desamero as well and obviously there are just killer riffs everywhere; the whole material is just awesome and so is the production… and who cares if the drummer sometimes looses the tempo in fast parts or that the whole album sounds like it was recorded on the rehearsal or that some of these riffs / ideas sound familiar? I don’t. Ughhhh… There are some absolutely neckbreaking and massacring songs like “Thresholds of Pandemonium”, ferocious “The Ominous Parallels” (killer doomy riff near its end!), doom monolith “The Storm from the East” filled with some Celtic Frost riffage and “Forged in the Crucible of Death”… They’re enough to cause some serious bloodshed and gutripping. Recommended!
Standout tracks: “Thresholds of Pandemonium”, “The Storm from the East”, “Forged in the Crucible of Death”
Final rate: 83/100