Disgusting, melodic and innovative, Ulcerate’s Cutting The Throat Of God is everything death metal should be in 2024

On album number seven, New Zealand’s Ulcerate raise their own bar and set a new benchmark for death metal releases this year

Ulcerate – Cutting The Throat Of God album cover
(Image: © Debemur Morti)

You can trust Louder Our experienced team has worked for some of the biggest brands in music. From testing headphones to reviewing albums, our experts aim to create reviews you can trust. Find out more about how we review.

Ulcerate know how to be fucking heavy. Since starting in Auckland, New Zealand, 24 years ago, the power trio have been mixing tech-death, noise and post-metal into a noxious, choking concoction. Theirs is a style that doesn’t always go for the jugular, but its constant dissonance means that, when it does, it strikes like a beast leaping from a quagmire to end your life.

Such a distinct sound has made these brutes leaders in a genre of one, and for album seven they’ve added extra melody to their cocktail of nasty things. The result does nothing to smooth out how hideous this band are, though. If anything, it means Cutting The Throat Of God has just enough earworms for these sonic beatings to stick with you for the rest of your life.

Opener To Flow Through Ashen Hearts establishes this emphasis on song craft, its main riff being a simple four-note lick. However, the three-piece quickly go batshit around that progression, as the track rises from unsettling ambience to torrents of drums, roars and an incessant guitar tone. The closing title track is similarly, shockingly accessible (by this lot’s standards anyway), a start-stop rhythm section framing a grinding lead line.

In between those poles, centrepiece Transfiguration In And Out Of Worlds packs a bludgeoning but headbanging groove. To See Death Just Once, on the other hand, focuses on the more ambient end of the Ulcerate canon, then accelerates to a blast-beating netherrealm during its latter half. The collective effect is both a summary of everything that makes this band special, plus an absolute rampage that storms them to new levels of excellence.

Ulcerate have always been underdogs on account of their sheer extremity and, let’s be honest, Cutting… isn’t going to hoist them to the top of the charts. But, as a statement of these aggressors’ ongoing uniqueness and a meticulous opus of death metal, it deserves to put everyone in heavy music on high alert. This inventive, infectious and nauseating experience is what every brutal band should be gunning to outdo in 2024.

Cutting The Throat Of God is out on June 14 via Debemur Morti.

Ulcerate - Cutting the Throat of God (Full album) - YouTube Ulcerate - Cutting the Throat of God (Full album) - YouTube
Watch On
Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.