Artist: Accursed Kingdom
Album: Decades of Hate
A proper kingdom takes hundreds of years, thousands of people and countless gallons of sweat and willpower to construct and maintain. First, there lies the issue of establishing yourself—beating down the brazen masses of dime-a-dozen, faceless look-a-likes vying to dominate what’s rightfully yours. Then, once you’ve managed to craft a sprawling empire of your own, there’s the issue of keeping it running smoothly—preventing mutiny. Accursed Kingdom manage to do both of these flawlessly, as Decades of Hate, the UK deathcore act’s debut release, reigns cruelly over the likes of the band’s peers. Establishing its empire with obliterating heaviness and putrid, violent lyricism, Accursed Kingdom keep a firm grip on their malicious monarchy with technical, yet melodic and groovy influences which keep Decades of Hate from feeling decades long—constantly attacking and berating the listener with new, fresh means of devastation.
Decades of Hate is an empire founded on one concept: hatred. Pure seething anger functions as the motive force for Accursed Kingdom’s ravaging, rampaging juggernaut of an album. Pounding, dominating percussion reigns over the listener with an iron fist, using beefy, thick kick drums and walloping, gunshot-like snares to blast holes in the listener’s eardrums. While the drums whale away at the listener’s ears, the guitars and bass go right for their throat. Tracks like the visceral, intense “El Chapo” alongside the dissonant “Knifeman” feature gnashing, grinding combinations of shreddy, technically impressive riffs and groovy, headbang-inducing grooves. While these kinds of guitar lines grab the listener and throttle them until they can’t walk, see or think straight, the types of absolutely mind-numbing combinations of blunt, belligerent heaviness and tight-knit hypertechnical fretwork on “Decades of Hate” rob the listener of oxygen—and thus life—completely. These tracks show the guitars working as a cohesive, combative unit, destroying every obstacle on their path to technical deathcore mastery.
While Accursed Kingdom create an empire based on hate, by the time the listener’s first listen through of Decades of Hate is complete, it is obvious that there is much more to the album than just anger. It begins with the pulsating perversion of the pummeling percussion—the lick-inflicted lacerating lesions which leak liquid bitterness. However, with the inclusion of the desiccating, furious vocal element which drives Decades of Hate, what was merely pissed before now becomes furious—and armed with a weapon to do something about it. Instrumentally, Accursed Kingdom are at the top of their game—however, when the vocals serve as a bitter, hate-filled vessel for the absolutely insidious lyrics, the “game” turns into a real-life war waged on the listener’s sanity. Whether it’s the poetic loathing in “Decades of Hate” or any one of the songs such as “Necrophilia Divulge” which utilize themes of sexual depravity to oppress the listener, Decades of Hate’s vocals make a heavy release nearly unbearable.
Decades of Hate’s metamorphosis into a magnanimous dictatorship of relentless heaviness is complete with their inclusion of occasional symphonic and melodic elements. Unmoving stalwarts of heart-pounding, bone-snapping heaviness clash furiously with unstoppable levels of technically impressive, jaw- ddroppingly beautiful melody. The deceptively named “Atrocities” showcases this brilliantly—by combining prolapse-inducing, earth-shattering breakdowns with catchy, hooky guitar lines and near-ethereal atmospheric elements, the listener feels almost as if they’re poised on the edge of a dream—a dream which might turn out to be a nightmare.
Whether you’ve been searching for decades or you’re just starting your hunt for the rulers of bitter, hate-filled hardcore-tinted death metal, look no further than Accursed Kingdom’s Decades of Hate. It is a comprehensive, oppressive, all-seeing and all-ruling totalitarian ruler of the deathcore world.
For Fans Of: Martyr Defiled, Black Tongue, Oceano, Forsaken
By: Connor Welsh