In Bleak Fragments, Destroyers of All are upfront about their strategy towards progressive death metal. They begin with a quiet intro that whips into a storm of speed and aggression, setting the pacing and expectations for the rest of the performance. From the death metal perspective alone, the album packs a hell of a punch. Rapid fire growls that have a commendable focus on enunciation, percussion that kicks like a mutated donkey, and bone-crushing guitar riffs are only a few of the tools in the band’s impressive arsenal. A bagful of tricks accompanies the assault and avoids being gimmicky through careful execution.
Orchestral elements haunt various sections of Bleak Fragments, spanning from choral backings to quick violin spurts. Also, the music breaks into keyboard and bass driven progressive sections with the occasional jazz interlude. All of these elements are paced in a tempo that slows down and speeds up on the regular in shockingly smooth transitions, making for a dynamic and unique performance.
Bleak Fragments is an intricate and powerful monster. Destroyers of All demonstrate exceptional skill in both brute strength and delicate detail. Clearly a lot of thought was invested in the structure of the album and it pays off in a delightful listening experience. For those who like death or progressive metal, or even just looking for something new, give this one a spin.