Genre: Progressive Death Metal
1. They Will Worship This Fire Of Agony
2. Stillborn Bastard Of The Nazarene
3. For That Which May Appease Lions
4. Serpent Of The Styx
5. Profaned And Perfected
6. The Burning Sands Of His Kingdom
Four years on from the well-received EP ‘The Consummate Ascendancy’, Arbitrator have crafted a full-length album which delivers a well-defined sound that is clear to hear within the opening track. Death metal at its core, but there are hints of electronic synths, ominous orchestra and industrial crunch all within a progressive and challenging array of six song structures. This is not an album for those seeking cheap thrills, but rather for those who like to hear death metal’s blueprint rearranged into the aural equivalent of a Picasso. Second track ‘Stillborn Bastard Of The Nazarene’ contains a synthesized drum beat during the bridge, which sounds like it would be more at home within a pop radio hit. It’s bizarre to say the least, but it works within the expansive cacophony of sounds that is this album. With song titles like ‘Serpent Of The Styx’ and ‘They Will Worship This Fire Of Agony’, it’s obvious that Arbitrator are pulling out all the satanic stops and taking a near 40 minute pot-shot at Christianity, and they manage to exercise this well-tread lyrical theme without making you roll your eyes. This is largely down to the commanding nature of the music at hand, which is wrapped in a very sinister, destructive aura, although the vocals don’t always sit very well in the mix. It’s not all brutish; there are frequent uses of lingering keys that grant the album scattered moments of introspective serenity, even though they’re often heard through the aforementioned musical chaos. This is not to say that this is a perfect album, there’s a feeling that this record is the first step towards refining an airtight sound. Let us hope that they get there, because I’d bet that it will blow minds.