Ashen – Godless Oath

Band: Ashen
Title: Godless Oath
Label: Bitter Loss Records
Release date: 06 August 2021
Country: Australia
Format reviewed: High-quality Digital Recording

Well, if it isn’t time to head to the land down under? Australia based Ashen appears to have released a brand-new EP Godless Oath at the beginning of August and let me just begin by telling you how absolutely striking the album cover is! Just amazeballs.

The title track Godless Oath is the first in line filled with old-school inspired traditional death metal. It really does give a reminder of such bands as Dismember, Bloodbath and such Swedish death-metal acts drenched in the classic Boss HM-2 pedal cranked to the max type of guitar tone along with clicky heavy drums and distorter bass. The fitting deep guttural vocals treats the music in equal ways, and I just know that fans of classic death metal will not be disappointed, especially those who lean towards the Swedish sound. Mass Cremation is heavy as hell in itself; the slow and tormenting drums along with the string instruments set the tone together; a gem of a song which doesn’t invent much new but stays true to the genre and sound.

The pummeling bass will stop at nothing, and Ruins spares no expense on the energy account and the vocals even pull of a rather impressive Peter Tägtgren growling along with some higher pitched fry-screaming. Asphyxiant takes a rather large turn as it starts with an eerie feeling in the back, keyboard patterns and as the metal starts up it is more dynamic and melodic than the previous classic sounding death metal. Spooky spoken vocals between verses hammers on the fact that this surely wasn’t expected.

Lastly, we have Inferno which is a banger of a finisher honestly. The production is quite heavy with parts here and there that are some of the tightest there are. I was mostly disappointed that there were only five tracks. I would have loved to hear more already.

If I hadn’t known beforehand that this group is from Australia, I could have sworn that they were from Sweden as they carry the Swedish death metal sounding legacy forward with their heads held high. The performance is absolutely great, the songs as well and the production is spot on perfect of this sort of music. I simply cannot wait for what this group comes up with going forward. 9/10 Julia Katrin

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9/10 Epic Storm
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