"Pre-Emptive Strike"

By Dr. Abner Mality

FINALLY! Somebody in the United States finally knows to get the true sound of "war metal" as practiced by the likes of Bolt Thrower, Asphyx and Hail of Bullets. These two dog-faces from the East Coast have dished up a barbaric full frontal assault that makes you feel like you're ground zero at a carpet bombing!

This record is just overloaded with skull-smashing goodness. The blandly titled "Intro" is actually an instrumental juggernaut full of militaristic mid-tempo chug and doomy crawl, leading to the speed blitzkrieg of "Bred To Kill".  These guys know that THE RIFF IS GOD and they come up with some honeys. The slower tunes like "Landbrecher 666" and the ambitious "Anesthetic Death" have that tank-like heaviness practiced by Hail of Bullets and Asphyx, while faster stuff like "Burnt and Destroyed" and "Frenzied Amputation" hit the gas and show the relationship between thrash and death is still an incestuous one. Man, I love the "chugging" parts of these songs! And the best is saved for last with "Dropping The Tsar Bomb"...if you don't feel like breaking shit after hearing this one, you're either deaf or in the Taliban.

It's true, war is a tired subject in extreme metal, almost as much as Satan is, but if you actually sound like a gut-churning battlefield, as Entrenched does, then you can get away with it. Along with Cianide and Autopsy, this is the best of riff-based death metal so far in 2011.