Kingdom of Conspiracy

01. Kingdom of Conspiracy
02. Bound to Order
03. Keep the Silence
04. God Complex
05. Echoes of Despair
06. Indoctrinate
07. The Great Sleep
08. A Spectacle of Lies
09. Serving Divinity
10. All That Awaits Us

[Nuclear Blast]

If a “Big Four” of death metal were ever to be determined, there would be a very strong argument for the legendary Immolation to make the cut. A band with a history that spans over 25 years and nine studio albums, Immolation’s twisted, dissonant, and darkly groovy brand of death metal has had a bigger impact on death metal than they seem to be given credit for, and traces of their influence can be found in many of the prevalent death metal bands on the scene today, as well as in the avant-garde compositions of bands such as Ulcerate, Mitochondrion and Portal. Such an extensive career leaves ample room for some duds, especially since the band currently exists amidst a scene in which many younger acts are leading the charge for the future of the beloved genre, but Immolation, like a fine wine, seem to have only gotten better with age, and their latest offering, Kingdom of Conspiracy, should lay all the naysayers’ doubts to rest.

Opening track ‘Kingdom of Conspiracy’ sets the tone appropriately for the album and is one of Immolation’s most accessible songs to date. In fact, the album as a whole may be Immolation’s most accessible, and for those who have never taken the time to explore Immolation’s discography, Kingdom of Conspiracy is a great place to start. Criminally underrated guitarist Bob Vigna’s riffs will writhe and slither their way into your skull throughout the course of the album, and together with fellow axeman Bill Taylor, the duo has composed some of their strongest work to date. Bassist/ vocalist Ross Dolan’s growls are as ferocious and commanding as ever, and gone are his trademark anti-Christian sentiments this time around, instead opting to direct his deranged vocal attack towards more political matters. Drummer Steve Shalaty has always approached his drum parts in a very unconventional and spastic manner, and he especially shines here, thanks in part to the superb production duo of Paul Orofino and Zack Ohren. This is easily Immolation’s cleanest, most powerful-sounding record to date.

The element which has always separated Immolation from their peers is their ability to write songs proficiently without being predictable or too straightforward, and this is a craft that primary songwriters and founding members Dolan and Vigna have perfected over the years. Kingdom of Conspiracy is ripe with Immolation’s signature songwriting and sonic fingerprints, which is both it’s biggest strength and it’s primary downfall. After all these years, Immolation are still churning out quality death metal, but those hoping for an experimental album or a huge shift in style will be disappointed. Even so, it’s safe to say that this is not the same band that recorded 1991’s landmark Dawn of Possession, though that album’s spirit is still very much present. Much progress has been made. The band shows sides of themselves not seen before, such as the black metal-esque tremolo opening of ‘The Great Sleep’ or the more straight-forward groove breakdown mid-way through the titular track, but they execute these in a way that only Immolation could.

Overall, Kingdom of Conspiracy is a crushing slab of death metal, one that proves that even after 25 years, Immolation are still one of the undisputed masters of their craft. Indulge in this vintage sampling of Immolation, and experience one of the most destructive albums of the year.


Immolation – Kingdom of Conspiracy gets…


– AS


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