Fear Those Who Fear Him by VallenfyreRelease date: June 2, 2017
Label: Century Media Records
As introductions to albums go, ‘Born To Decay’, the intense opening of the new Vallenfyre album Fear Those Who Fear Him takes some beating in announcing the album to follow. A horrific initial feeling leads into an evil sounding mantra delivering the albums title before the bands music kicks in and as are the bands intentions, it’s like early Autopsy meeting prime Celtic Frost head on and it sounds grim, none more heavy and above all magnificent.
This instrumental opening sets the tone nicely and when the cacophony of noise of the following track ‘Messiah’ kicks in, it’s like a size twelve boot to the head. As with the bands previous two albums, this is pure early death metal and crust punk influenced all done in that inimitable Vallenfyre style and it sounds inspired and above all else, it sounds like dirgey and noisy fun, both for the band and for the listener.
Despite losing a couple of band members (bassist Scoot left the band earlier in the year and guitarist Hamish Glencross handles bass duties for the album) and having a new drummer in Waltteri Vayernyn (who does a sterling job stepping into the massive shoes of Adrian Erlandsson), the band still sound as vibrant and passionate as they did on their debut album, 2011s A Fragile King and the band play a blinder on Fear Those Who Fear Him with Gregor Mackintoshs primal vocals, in particular sounding immense.
Tracks like the frantic ‘Nihilist’, ‘Kill All Your Masters’ and the monolithic ‘The Merciless Tide’ in particular are some of the best songs that Vallenfyre have ever created and will slot in well in their formidable live set. Sonically, this album is the best album that Vallenfyre have done thus far with the production being spot on, the crust and dirge aspects that are crucial to the sound of the band are intact but the band have a bigger sound that breaks out here and sounds immense especially on a song like the epic ‘Soldier Of Christ’ or ‘An Apathetic Grave’.
As Fear Those Who Fear Him ends with ‘Temple Of Rats’, a song that could have easily been on Repulsions classic Horrified album and there isn’t a better compliment than that, it is clear that Valkenfyre have made the album they have been striving to make and succeeded with ease. This is the definition of punked up, hardcore, crust indebted death metal and in Vallenfyre’s hands, it sounds triumphant and glorious.