“Incoming Death”

By Dr. Abner Mality

I love Asphyx and have since their very first record “The Rack”. I often consider them the heaviest band in the world that doesn’t devolve into total noise. The tradition continues on “Incoming Death”, but for the very first time, I’m starting to smell a whiff of stale air coming off this rotting corpse.

Truth is, these guys are slavishly repeating past glories from their recent albums “Deathhammer” and “Death: The Brutal Way”. “Incoming Death” (get the link in all the album titles) is pure Asphyx but really sounds like they’ve taken old songs and just changed them in minor ways. For example, opening track “Candiru” sounds an awful lot like the title track of “Deathhammer” with its ravaging speed and the slow doomy songs like “The Grand Denial” and “Subterra Incognita” are reworkings of “Der Landser”. The tunes are brutally heavy and singer Martin van Drunen sounds as painfully tormented as always, but the record is often in the déjà vu category.

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy this album. “Wardroid” and “The Feeder” are two of the better songs Asphyx has written and they also provide two excellent and super-heavy covers of Winter’s “Servants of the Warsmen” and Master’s “Master” to tip their hat to influences. I don’t want these guys to inject synthesizer or fiddle into their sound, but there are points here when Asphyx just sounds lazy. “Death: The Only Immortal” really drags and is subpar for them.

Any fan of old Asphyx can pick up “Incoming Death”and enjoy it, but even diehards will likely acknowledge this is not their best.