Kyzer Soze are playing Brisbane tomorrow at the Crowbar in Fortitude Valley. Photo Contributed
Kyzer Soze are playing Brisbane tomorrow at the Crowbar in Fortitude Valley. Photo Contributed Contributed

The Hard Word reviews Kyzer Soze


Kyzer Soze's album Ascension is transcendent in its scope, jaw dropping in its depth and epic in its clarity and focus.

They have managed a nice mix of black metal, death metal and thrash metal and just a sprinkling of Sepultura-esque vibes on top.

All I could envisage while listening to this album is Kyzer Soze on the main stages on the European festival circuit, fire catapulting from the front of stage and a 100 rows of lights cascading down on them in front of thousands of fans.

They would easily fit at Wacken or Bloodstock, and even The Unholy Alliance tour with Slayer and Lamb of God a few years back.

It is easy to limit a death metal band to playing underground clubs and dam them to the obscurity of the shadows, but if you envisage the music with budget and backing of major bands you get a sense of what has been created.

And really the Gold Coast and Brisbane scene have no shortage of amazing bands that are redefining the metal landscape with bands like Widow The Sea and Kyzer Soze creating albums which refresh what was great about old school death metal.


If you take Track 3 'Descendants of Cain' for example, it is just pure aggression, ferocity and jaw clenching metal that makes you grind your teeth in pleasure.

The growling vocals of Daniel Petleyrip rip through the frequencies like a chainsaw rumbling and buzzing.

They have a deep throaty richness that is very reminiscent of the Aborted sound and it works so well.

But just as you think you've settled into the groove of his lyrics it gets thrown upside down by demonic high pitch contrast which is like razor blades on glass.

Unfortunately Daniel has since left the band but Alex, Tyler and Matthew have managed to share vocal duties at live shows and it is perfectly seamless.


When it comes to the guitar the trills and licks that sweep through the songs on guitar provide the intricacy any musician could want without being overbearing while the brunt of the song gets driven along by solid guitar lines and bass.

The duelling solos, and whammy bar bends hit discordant notes and then take a left into soaring power metal tones before diving back down into a head scalping off-key note. It works well.

That's what makes it so good. The dual guitar lines work together to create some groovy motifs, primarily looking for each other on the octaves but also finding the gaps to create twisted gnarled riffs that are instantly identifiable but still brutally heavy.

They then break it down into thrash metal like riffs, switching again to palm muted and double-picked chunk all the while keeping the integrity of the song.

Track two 'God of War' is a really good example of this and half way through the song the bowel clenching vocals are running over thrash riffs.

There is also a heavy black metal element running through the songs which occasionally have touches of Viking Metal in there.

Track four will throw listeners as it is a mere 1:34 and starts slow but finishes up with blistering speed.

Track five is aptly named 'Aedes Satan' as I am sure they sold their soul to Satan to get this song.

I have a feeling that part of the deal was that if they didn't remember the legacy of old school death metal he would make them lick his balls.

And out of fear they have done exactly that - not lick his balls - but create the purest mix of an old school ethos and brand new vibe of death metal that I've heard without it falling into a deathcore trap of breakdowns and triggered drums.

Track Six 'Soulless' summons all the memories of Napalm Death, Enslaved, Carcass, Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, and Suffocation while freshening it with an added punch and groove.

And I would say listening to this track you realise that a touch more groove the rest of the album would have worked really well.

The album is relentless and heavy, and a bit of groove would have added to the thrash riffs for a break in the sheer speed and brutality.


'Slaves to a Dead God' and Soulless though have that groove and one has to mention Daniel Roine on drums.

You cannot play this kind of music without an absolutely 'swimming cap tight' drummer.

That's a term I made up - I hope it catches on.

His blast beats and double kick pound away relentlessly through the album, with fills so tight your eyes start to water.

It is brutal, but underneath all the blasts and fills are little easter egg moments where he drops out a note in the paradiddle or adds a bell on the ride to accent the riff.

'Sacred Sermon' is a ballsy instrumental which is well done and could have been a disaster.

But it has a nice Metallica 'Orion' feel and to be honest is a much needed break just before the final song 'The Brethen'.

Everything about the album is professionally handled from the production, to the artwork and photography to the cd pressing.

Col B Caddell deserves special mention for his photography and design which work well with the theme of the album.

I only hope they didn't actually have to cut someone's head open.

This is killer album that should be part of anyone's collection if they are looking for something fresh and new but not in the deathcore realm.

It is a must have if you enjoy following local aussie bands.

Get it at bandcamp or for ridiculous low price of $10.

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