Release Date: Oct 11, 2011
Record label: Prosthetic
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Heavy Metal, Death Metal, Black Metal
Whether you want to call it black metal, thrash, blackened thrash, or anything else on the ever growing list of metal subgenres, what’s really important here is that Skeletonwitch know how to write some serious metal songs. On its fourth album, Forever Abomination, the Athens, Ohio band freely mashes styles, pulling together the choicest bits of black and thrash metal to create the most intense sound possible. This blend of driving riffage and suffocating relentlessness allows the band to strike a fine balance between freewheeling guitar worship and oppressive gloom.
The fourth studio effort from Ohio’s Skeletonwitch has the same flaw as their previous releases—at times one can feels like they’re listening to the same song over and over. Fortunately, that song is a raging badass thrash attack. Opener “The Horrifying Force” explodes into being with Hetfieldian skill, while the solos on “Of Ash And Torment” and “Cleaver Of Souls” are sure to bring quicksilver tears to any metalhead’s eyes.
Skeletonwitch have always been a party band, even if their cover art and song titles tells you otherwise. My first taste of the quintet came in 2006 via their brief, self-released Worship the Witch EP. I didn't know much about the Athens, Ohio, group but enjoyed their mix of classic Bay Area thrash and Norwegian-style black metal-- it came off like Cliff Burton-era Metallica jamming with Immortal.