Morbid Angel – Kingdoms Disdained
Kingdoms Disdained is the ninth studio album by American death metal band Morbid Angel, which was released on December 1, 2017, by Silver Lining Music. It is the first album since 2003’s Heretic to feature Steve Tucker and the introduction of Annihilated drummer Scott Fuller. It is also the first to not feature David Vincent, Destructhor, and Tim Yeung since 2011’s Illud Divinum Insanus, as all three members left the band in 2015. A video was made for “Garden of Disdain”.
Morbid Angel released their ninth full-length album, Kingdoms Disdained, at the end of last year. Much like Morbid Angel’s own rejuvenated death metal sound, the clip for “Garden of Disdain” brings a renewed thrill to the art of the music video. When listening to the album’s use of technicality, the guitar can emit such exotic blends of sound at times. It may start out shredding with bloodthirsty adrenaline, working its way into becoming this whirlwind of grinding insanity, each note painting a picture of madness. That being said, however, these awesome moments happen throughout the record and aren’t a consistent quality from beginning to end. The bass playing adds a decent foundation of pounce behind the guitar, but one of the bigger issues with Kingdoms Disdained comes from the drumming. The vocals don’t necessarily hurt any of the material, but they don’t add much either. What ends up becoming the biggest weakness at play is the music’s monotony.
Because their last album had elements of industrial, Morbid Angel ruthlessly trashed for it by many fans, and was shown no mercy by critics. Admittingly it did have a few weak moments here and there, but I will still stand on what I’ve always said, it was a solid album and much better than some people said it was. It’s possible the scathing opinions were just an example of too many metal fans who run down their favorites for putting out the same album over and over, and when the band does try something new, they get slammed for doing so. Go fucking figure.
The album’s title refers to the current aural document of a world sinking into uncharted despair, as explained by Tucker. He also says that the artwork “is a fair image of the world today, but taken from a different perspective; the perspective of those Gods who built this, who may be resting now but are starting to wake up.” In addition to Tucker’s take on the album’s title, Trey Azagthoth told Revolver that it references the 1980s animated cartoon Thundarr the Barbarian.
When talking about the making of the album, Tucker explains, “The first thing Trey said to me was, ‘I want to make killer music with killer people.’ To go into any more detail than that, honestly, I don’t even remember, but it was really just about, ‘Hey, man, I want this to be Morbid Angel. I don’t want this to be what it was being changed to be.’ I told Trey my first question was always the musical direction. Any time it involves playing music, that’s got to be the first question. Everything Trey said to me and all the discussions we had made me very comfortable that Trey had every intention of doing the kind of album that Morbid Angel fans expect and that I, personally, feel. To do anything else, I don’t feel it, and, to be honest with you, it’s not going to be great by any means if I’m trying to do something that, to me, is fake. I think the thing is the same about Trey. Trey’s a very focused and singular-focused person when it comes to music. I think he knew exactly what he wanted. He knew that I was the right guy to give him what he wanted out of this album.” Tucker, Azagthoth, and Fuller contributed to the songwriting and the inspiration of the lyrics comes from “social events that are occurring through time, repeatedly” and “from always a third-person perspective. They’re definitely always from the eyes of someone who is neutral. They are an observation more than anything.”
Artist: Morbid Angel
Album: Kingdoms Disdained
Released: December 1, 2017
Label: Silver Lining Music
Producer: Erik Rutan
Genre: Death Metal, Heavy Metal
Website: Official Website
Discs: 1 disc
Reviewed by: Mike Davidson
Our Rating: 3.2 /5
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