Martyrs Shrine - _Martyrs Shrine_
(Soundmass, 2008)
by: Quentin Kalis (6 out of 10)
Martyrs Shrine is the creation of Michael Carlisle and Mike Forsberg, both formerly of renowned Christian metallers Mortification. No need to stop reading -- there are only two songs that could be regarded as being Christian orientated ("Superstition" and "Apparition"), and even these are sufficiently ambiguous to be capable of a differing interpretations. In any case, the majority of the songs are centred on mankind's myriad social and political ills.

Now that their origins are out of the way, it is time to consider the music proper. Martyrs Shrine performs brutal and straightforward death metal, which is not problematic in itself; it's just that this is yet another album whose overwhelming failure is that of creativity and imagination. All the right boxes are ticked, or rather the correct colours are in the proper places; it borders that close to formulaic. C'mon guys, I've heard what your parent band achieved in their heyday -- I know you're capable of more than this pedestrian affair.


(article published 8/1/2009)

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