A genuine step forward for death metal’s super-modern wing, Apophys’s 2015 debut, Prime Incursion, was a precocious and thrilling affair. From the opening seconds of Children Of The Stars onwards, it’s clear that its follow-up is an even more compelling statement of progressive intent. This is futuristic death metal with big ideas and furious focus. Songs like Matters Unresolved and Deadlock somehow crowbar authentic swing into the expected melee of ultra-precise riffing and rib-shattering kicks, with Sepultura-style lurching grooves and an underlying sense of otherworldly disquiet straight from the Gojira handbook thrown in for generous measure. Not that Apophys are seeking to shrug off death metal’s core trappings here: from The Verdict’s angular blizzard of blasts to What We Will Be’s glacial grind, this is every inch the masterclass in virtuoso ingenuity that the Dutchmen’s early material hinted at.
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