Adorned Graves – “The Hand of Death” (ep)


The Hand of Death (EP)In a world where old-school thrash metal is tough to find, Adorned Graves have released an ep that will help fill that void, but will certainly whet the appetite  of metal fans who will be now waiting for their debut album to be finished.

Adorned Graves certainly were not on my radar as far as bands go and from my US-centric perspective, this ep from the Kaiserslutern band literally came as quite a surprise.  According to the band, they play “Old School Thrash Metal with a touch of Doom Metal” and I would say that is accurate as long as there is more emphasis on the thrash and less on the doom.  Often a band’s influences don’t necessarily describe their music but in this case, the ones cited by Adorned Graves would, so you can expect to hear Slayer, Black Sabbath, Trouble, Vengeance Rising, and Metallica.

The ep opens up with the nearly 7 minute long  song “Adorned Graves” and it is worth listening to every second.  The ominous feedback-soaked guitar drum opening is very reminiscent of “Raining Blood” by Slayer and the slow, somewhat long intro section works well to build tension and expectation before building into a galloping rhythm.  Spike in some elements of Sabbath riffs and you have a great sound that will draw in fans of both bands.  Vocals are shouted and gruff and work well with the song.  About halfway through the track the true thrash begins and there are even some vocal elements reminiscent of Rob Halford sprinkled in this song and throughout the ep.  The numerous twists and turns in the song make one forget that it is nearly 7 minutes long.  Guitar tones sound menacing, drums are machine gun fire fast and strong and carry the song along nicely.  Production sound suitably clean with a rough tone/edge to it , working well with the overall sound.

Adorned Graves do show a number of different styles within the four songs on the ep and “Hand of Death” starts out sounding more like something from Black album era Metallica before the verse section begins and the speed picks up, leaving a song that reminds me a bit of “Painkiller” by Judas Priest in some sections and some newer Metallica in others.  Meanwhile “Fightgrinder” and “The Accuser” returns back to and older Metallica thrash feel, sounding like it could have come from the Kill Em All  and Ride the Lightning era.

Simply, this is some of the best metal I’ve heard this year and I now need to go back and make room on my “Best of 2015” list.  Expectations are very high for the upcoming full length!

Rating: 8/10

Written by John Jackson

1. Adorned Graves
2. Hand of Death
3. Fightgrinder
4. Accuser (Saint cover)

Band Members:
Cailen- Vocals, guitars
Deafon – Drums, vocals
Wormser – Guitars
Dewwel – Bass

Record Label: Independent, Nov. 2015

Weblinks: Facebook / Website

Buy the album here:
Holland: First Paradox
Norway: Nordic Mission

Soundcloud teaser clip:

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