Vulture – Dealin’ Death (Metal Blade)
Given that Vulture’s 2019 opus, Ghastly Waves & Battered Graves, turned the heads of thrashers across the globe, it’s no surprise that there’s a real sense of excitement around Dealin’ Death.
And from the moment Malicious Souls breaks out of the traps, it’s clear that the manic energy which powered Ghastly Waves… hasn’t dissipated.
Vulture trade in pure adrenaline bursts.
They have fun with their music.
And when their Molotov cocktail of early Teutonic thrash, embryonic speed metal and horror flick sass explodes, you’ll sure as hell know about it.
Yet Dealin’ Death isn’t simply a rehash of its incendiary predecessor.
Ok, so vocalist still Luke Steeler still snarls, screams and yelps his way across each track.
And there are plenty of moments of raw, thrashy abandon here: songs like Multitudes Of Terror and Flee The Phantom sound like the sci-fi biker bloke from Painkiller teaming up with 80s Kreator to paint the Ruhr red.
But there’s more subtlety to this new opus (and it has to be said, much less reverb).
On Below The Mausoleum, the band delve deeper into the spectral realm and guitarists Stefan Castevet and M. Outlaw pull their glorious axework straight from the Denner/Shermann playbook. Speed kills, but in Vulture’s case, a sinewy, mid-paced attack seems to work just as well.
And then we have Gorgon, a track built around a fist pumping chorus, rather than a barrage of riffs: it’s a menacing tale which revels in classic metal bombast and mythological menace, and sees Vulture spread their wings and embrace a more focused writing approach.
The Court Of Caligula closes Dealin’ Death in a similar vein, while upping the theatrics as the album draws to its bloody conclusion.
A more diverse offering than we’d perhaps expected, Dealin’ Death revels in the pure joy of heavy metal.
And the world is a better place for it.