Job : The wait was rather long for the new Arsis record. The “technical melodic death metal” band from Virginia released their last album in 2013 and has been at it since 2000. Their style has gradually evolved into something very particular with a strong fan base. Their technical death metal and melodic death metal are fused thrash metal and a little more black metal this time around.
Songs like ‘Hell Sworn’, ‘As Deep As Your Flesh’ and ‘Fathoms’ are the strongest examples of what the band sounds like nowadays. It’s a sound they’ve now perfected and the music grabs the attention by jumping for the listener’s throat at any chance it gets. The band also seems to learn greatly from genre-rivals Revocation; songs like ‘Funereal Might’ and ‘Death Vow’ sound very heavily inspired by the band from Boston.
However, vocalist James Malone’s high screams and one-dimensional approach to his vocals really break down a lot of the splendor the tracks work towards. Without any dynamics in his singing, and very little variation in the direction of the music, ‘Visitant’ sounds relatively flat. There’s very little oomph or impact to the heaviness on this record because it’s not offset against literally anything else – it’s all balls-to-the-wall fast and because dynamics aren’t integrated in the sound, ‘Visitant’ is ultimately a very predictable and one-sided listen. Fans will lap this up happily, and good on them. To outsiders, however, I can’t imagine this album doing any good.