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Immolation - "Close To A World Below"
Metalblade Rec. 2000

Hmmm, what to say about the masters that haven't already been said? This was actualy released quite some time ago as you probably know, but here's a review anyway, because the guys just deserve it. Now, I could just simply say, this album kicks major ass and it's definitely worth to buy, but here are few words anyway.
Those that are already familiar with Immo guys and their music (if you are not, where have you been all this time!?), know what to expect and be sure, the guys delivered all the goods promised with this album.
For those that never heard of Immolation (I hope just 2-3 guys maybe, so still worth mentioning), hmmm... how to describe them? Ok, maybe this will do: it's like fist slamming into your face and you will end up with broken nose! Ha ha ha, ok seriously now, the guys kill, crush and destroy with their unique style of death metal and if this is coming from a guy who knows all their albums pertty good, you better believe it (unless you're only into melodic and soft/cheesy metal ).
Let me state few Immo marks here. First, there are guitars. Now, the best way to describe them would be: emotions translated into music, but without any cheesy parts (remember, we're talking about "high class" death metal here). Many people tried to label them as a technical death metal, but it's not what you think. Guys are really great musicians and I guess those people got confused with all the tempo changes. To go on, they are intense, also fast when needed to be fast and brutal, but most of all, what is a trademark for any Immolation album is that it grows within you in time. Alex's incredible drumwork and Ross's significant voice (one of the best within DM scene) is also not to be neglected.
Lyrics are also very important factor for Immolation. I would say that they are one of the few bands that has intelligent and interesting lyrics within the scene. They are against all religions (mainly using Christian symbols as icons) and since most of the guys were raised in Catholic schools, they know what they are talking about (no blah blah Satan up/down here). Mostly the lyrics are written from the first person perspective (yeah!) and this time also a song about fuckin' holy pedophiles is included "Father, You're Not A Father".
Now, I could go into every song on this album, but than the review would be much longer than already is. The production is also great this time (but than again, I never said it sucked). The producer was Paul Orofino (again., as on "Failures..." and I guess they will work with him in the future aswell) and he did great job- probablly their best album (though I will always be a great fan of "Here In After"). Now, if you didn't like the drumsound on previous albums, maybe you'l like it this time or vice versa, but overall, Alex did a great job (again).
The cover was done by Andreas Marschall (like all the times before), except that this time his brother Alex helped him. Nice piece of art...
Maybe I gave them (Immolation) too much good points, but I can't help it if they deserve it. This is probablly one of the best death metal albums of 2000 (if not THE best- though I am huge Morbid Angel fan). Especially if you take into consideration that they are in the scene since 1986 (!)- first as Rigor Mortis- and they are still coming out with great and catchy songs (riff wise and lyric wise) and they are just growing bigger and better with every release.
Here's an album that no self respected death metal fan can afford to miss- and watch my words, give their music time to grow in you, you will be rewarded. Long live death metal and Immolation can't wait for a new one.

Author:   Klemen

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