In the world of music you don’t happen to find too many sibling combinations that keep a very strong discography throughout their entire career, especially when it comes to the niche genre of death metal. Off the top of my head the only siblings to really make a name for themselves are Eric and Brian Hoffman (Amon/ex-Deicide), Don and John Tardy (Obituary), J.J. and Mike Hrubovcak (Vile, Divine Rapture), Shane and Shaun Stiles (Intestinal Alien Reflux), Mark, Scott, and Mike Ditch (Gutted), and Max, Moises, and Alex Kolesne Camargo (Krisiun). We have watched these three aforementioned brothers grow from being just another anti-Christian death metal band from Brazil and into the juggernauts of blasphemy that they are today for the past 21 years. Most of their discography has been released under the Century Media banner, so it was quite obvious that they saw something in those brothers-in-arms that nobody else did, and they have stuck by all of their musical efforts thus far, and “The Great Execution” is no exception to this phenomenon of loyalty in the music industry.
Since Krisiun’s 2003 release, “Works of Carnage“, we have seen a stylistic shift in terms of technicality and song structures. While “Works of Carnage” was filled to the brim with quick sweeps, visceral riffs and crushing blast beats, there really wasn’t that much there in terms of keeping the chaos controlled, which is the exact reason why it is my favorite album of theirs. However, once we saw a more “refined” side to the band on both “AssassiNation” and “Southern Storm“, it was clear that the brothers were experimenting with trying to integrate more matured song structures with their cut-throat speed. While I feel they may have failed in some aspects to fully combine those two traits on those albums, they are still trying to make everything sync together on “The Great Execution“.
If I may quote a portion of the press release I have received with this album:
“We know this album is a major step ahead from anything we have done so far,” says
vocalist/bassist Alex Camargo. “The songs bring a lot more maturity in every aspect of the music, especially in the variation between the songs.”
Now, when it comes to press releases from a band trying to hype up their new album, I am always very suspect of what comes out of their mouths. I mean, why wouldn’t a band want to say that “it is (our) best/most mature material to date”? It is obvious that they want the listener to be enthralled and intrigued by statements like that. Now that I have gotten that out of the way, I have to say something that will put all of you in shock and awe: Alex Camargo isn’t jerking us around.
Right from the get-go you know you aren’t listening to a regular Krisiun album. There is just something else entirely behind the music and the emotion that pumps through your speakers. It isn’t about the band trying to “reinvent” themselves; it isn’t about trying to please the label by going more mainstream to capture newer fans; it isn’t about trying to be more “kvlt” than everyone else. It is about these brothers being able to show how much they have grown throughout their career and had never forgotten their bloody roots at the same time. The only comparison I can make is with how Behemoth made their switch and turned it up a notch going from “Satanica” to “Zos Kia Cultus“, and from “Zos Kia Cultus” to “Demigod“. It is that distinct with how much they have improved their sound.
No matter where you start in this album you know you’ve stumbled upon an even greater Krisiun beast than you could have prepared for. I found it a little odd in the way the band decided on the track order. It feels like the first half of the album is dedicated to those who were big fans of the last two albums, and the second half seems to cater to those who harken for a more “Works of Carnage“-era Krisiun, all while still keeping those modern influences in tact and blended much better than their previous efforts. It was kind of like listening to two different Krisiun EPs, one after the other. The variation in song writing certainly kept my attention and I was really taken back with how far the band has come.
You’ll even hear some guest appearances, like Joao Gordo of Brazilian thrash/hardcore band Ratos de Porao on the track “Extinção em Massa”. It was a very good choice to put him on that song as it feels like it was ripped from a discarded Sepultura songbook from the late ’80s, mixed with some heavy death metal and crossover/hardcore influences. Even the very talented Spanish/Gaucho guitarist Marcello Caminha makes a couple appearances. I wouldn’t be able to tell you what songs he shreds on, but you can obviously hear his acoustic influence in the songs “The Will to Potency” and “The Sword of Orion”. It was very smart to get a couple different artists that I am sure the rest of the world has not heard very much from, and I know that their performances will certainly get them more well known.
Another thing that I really respect about Krisiun is that they recorded this entire album using nothing but analog gear and instruments, just to make sure it didn’t sound “too processed”. You can feel that all of the instruments have a very bottom-heavy tone to them, and it works perfectly for the type of death metal these maniacs love to punish with. There is just a great balance to everything in the music overall, and it doesn’t leave me hoping that something was brought up or down a little more. It’s the perfect showcase for the band to show you that they do not mess around when it comes to writing music.
While I may not have been the biggest fan of their last two albums, it seems that Krisiun have managed to find the perfect blend of old-and-new-school sounds, as well as throwing in a few surprises along the way. It is just 10 tracks of punishing death metal thrown at you from many different angles. I can guarantee that this album will get many spins from both the die hard fans and the new ones who are lucky enough to hear and learn about these Brazilian monsters. “The Great Execution” will happily sit right next to “Works of Carnage” as my second favorite album from the Kolesne Camargo brothers. I am going to end this review with a simple quote for the fans:
“This is not just another death metal album. Go and get your copy, you won’t regret it.”