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Death Angel – The Evil Divide album review

Thrash metal veterans fire up their furnace once more

Sometimes the shortcomings of an album only fall into sharp relief when the next one arrives. 2013’s The Dream Calls For Blood might have had a cool title, bags of intensity and riffs, but it short-changed listeners when it came to actual songs.

Whereas only Left For Dead and the title track stuck in the brain back then, The Evil Divide serves up more memorable tunes thanks to honed songwriting. That’s not to say the band have mellowed, because those inventively brutal riffs and Mark Osegueda’s vocal ferocity remain present and correct.

But wonderful opener The Moth sets the agenda with multiple hooks, as does Lost which somewhat recalls Only-era Anthrax. It Can’t Be This could be a brilliant outtake from Faith No More’s The Real Thing sessions, with its mammoth riffing and outside-the-box feel. And even when Death Angel are at their heaviest, recalling their own immortal track Mistress Of Pain on the chugging Father Of Lies, the riff itself is catchy. Only a couple of so-so tracks prevent this from being a true classic, but a great record nonetheless.