When thinking of some of the more frigid areas in the United States, places cold enough to inspire death metal that feels like it’s freezing your bones in order to break them into dust, you’re probably considering Michigan, Minnesota, Maine, Colorado, etc. Your brain isn’t automatically going toward Dallas, but it looks like we’re all going to have to recalibrate how we answer that question.
Frozen Soul hail from Dallas, though you’d never guess that after taking on their destructive first record “Crypt of Ice,” being released by metal giants Century Media. But despite not being in what most consider frigid territory, they somehow breathe freezing sentiments into these 10 tracks and 39 minutes of bruising power that leave you ravaged behind them. The band—vocalist Chad Green, guitarists Michael Munday and Chris Bonner, bassist Samantha Mobley, drummer Matt Dennard—imagines all angles of wintry torture and demise, as they unfurl snarling death that leaves bruises and mental wounds behind. It’s a dawn-of-the-year excursion into the weather most of us feel outside right now, with us trying to avoid falling victim to the reaper’s blade. It’s a fucking muscular record.
The title track starts the record with strangeness before the guts are torn out and spilled into the snow. Grinding death pummels you as the leads cut through, the growls gurgle blood, and the trudging pace thrashes shreds muscle. “Arctic Stranglehold” has slithering growls and chunky power as the growls slither through madness as Green vows, “Your time has come.” Slow-driving fury picks up the pace as growls boil and the playing mashes until it fades away. “Hand of Vengeance” has keys dripping in before the whole thing lights up and explodes. Forceful playing rattles your brain inside your skull as growls sound scraped from Green’s guts, the leads catch fire, and the final moments melt flesh. “Wraith of Death” begins ominously as doomy muck gathers and spills through cracks in the walls, and the playing takes on a deliberate tone. The track crushes and ushers in darkness, ending in beastly carnage. “Merciless” ramps up quickly and gets super heavy in a hurry, chewing up flesh in its gears. The playing lays in a beating while the growls open wounds, and the track is devoured by an unforgiving wind.
“Encased in Ice” brings with it whipping gusts and a slower beast, though everything is just heavy as fuck. Raw growls make their way as vicious bludgeoning cracks skulls, the guitars push you to the limit, and everything ends in an icy grave. “Beat to Dust” is frigid from the outset before the pace begins to clobber, and crunchy death savages its victims. The growls mash amid a thrashy wave, battering through mud and slush before ending abruptly. “Twist the Knife” lets loose strange growls that echo in the atmosphere before the playing opens fully and kills. The bass is thick as hell, feeling like it’s coming for your throat, while complete misery is served with bloody coldness, slaughtering all the way to the end. “Faceless Enemy” has its riffs carving pathways to damnation as grim growls set a darker tone, and a stomping fury loosens the earth. The chorus smashes through rock while thick riffs add pressure, and the meanness of the tempo adds insult to your pile of injuries sustained. “Gravedigger” caps off the record by setting up a synth gaze before everything comes unglued. Animalistic rage and massive fury make a formidable duo while gritty vocals lay waste, and sinister guitar work burns everything to ash.
Entering just their third year of existence (though each member has plenty of experience elsewhere), Frozen Soul already have captured the attention and commitment of one of the biggest labels in metal and issued a killer debut with “Crypt of Ice.” This is especially suiting the season we’re experiencing in the Northern Hemisphere (where it’s already been snowier and icier than in many years previous), so this record is hitting even harder as we strive to stay warm. This is a promising debut by a band that is starting the year with a supreme dose of death metal served cold, and it’ll be really interesting to see how their profile increase as this year matures.
For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/frozensoultx/
To buy the album, go here: https://centurymedia.store/store
For more on the label, go here: https://www.centurymedia.com/