Maze Of Torment - Hammers Of Mayhem

dill_the_devil Music Editor
Maze Of Torment - Hammers Of Mayhem
Black Lodge Records - BLOD016CD - 2005
By Philip Whitehouse


Sweden's Maze Of Torment, amazingly enough, aren't Morbid Angel clones (as you may think from their name, which was a Morbid Angel song title). In fact, they play hyper-kinetic death/thrash which takes influence from acts such as prime Slayer and Dissection whilst mixing in enough death metal brutality and attitude to keep most people happy.

The albums pace rarely relents, and the clarity of the Abyss Studios production allows the savage riffery to really shine - this is non-stop intensity from start to finish. The machine-gun velocity is only broken with occasional mid-tempo chug riffs and the album's closing track, a faithful cover of Venom's 'In League With Satan' The musicianship is impressive throughout, and the songs are satisfyingly vicious and brutal throughout. The vocalist chooses a surprisingly intelligible high-pitched snarl over the more obvious growled vox, which gives an almost black metal atmosphere to the tracks.

Sadly, however, the problem with this record is the fact that the lack of variation in pace and intensity makes for a somewhat repetetive feel to the later songs of the album. It all blurs into a wall of sounds, with little change in structure, tempo or formula throughout. Taken individually, each track is a perfectly listenable, well-executed exercise in death/thrash violence, but as a whole, this album becomes somewhat dull.


Maze Of Torment Official Website
Black Lodge Records
I totally believe the criticism about monotony setting in, but how can I resist an album called "Hammers of Mayhem"??? :D