The Scandinavians have, for centuries, taken things to an extreme...they didn't just sit around raising crops and fishing the seas; no, they jumped into their Longships and raided every damned river and ocean where their sails would take them! Behold! Another band of berserkers who have come to pillage your town!
I was turned onto Die Hard's album "Nihilistic Vision" a couple of years ago, and it was, to put it simply, a punishing barrage of blackened thrash which was hard to ignore. This is their follow up to that album, but you must keep in mind that, in total, they have released eight albums if you include their 2007 demo and five EPs they've put out over the years. This album includes tracks off of 2010's "Thrash Them All" EP which was released on Halloween and the Antichrist 7" EP released earlier this year.
Conjure the Legions is unusual, in the way that it seems to touch on a wide array of styles, from Teutonic thrash to deep, gnarly blackened crust tinged with epic NWOBHM which can be clearly heard in the shredding leads and galloping beats of "Robe and Crown".
There is no doubt that Die Hard love their thrash and black metal, but I feel damned confident that these dudes were just as inspired by such noted Swedish d-beat bands like Wolfpack(brigade), Anti Cimex and Disfear among others. Hell, with tracks like "Cold Scythe" I swear I was listening to crusters even with its death metal inspired moments...but, I've said this for awhile, I have a feeling, as far as the underground is concerned, that the influences of the newer bands are certainly manifesting themselves more clearly now than perhaps during the early bay thrash movement in the style which has emerged over the past decade best described as metalpunk; Die Hard is a delightful mix of Disfear meets Kreator and Venom or vice versa depending on how you want to look at it. Now on the flipside, "Sanctify the Morbid" is straight up metal, ala early Slayer; Simon fuckin' SHREDS on this song!
All three members are insanely brilliant! Check out "Antichrist", which is a pit generator if there ever was one, goddamn it's a sick song, Perra drums like a lunatic, Simon unleashes the axe with smokin' speed and Harry is keeping the tempo like the best of 'em!
Their presence is powerful and theatric, as is the case with many of our Swedish brethren, harkening back to the roots of the early European extreme metal pioneers such as Celtic Frost with lots of leather and black paint; this album will appeal right across the board to thrashers on either side of the aisle, both metal and punk.
Though, it appears the band has taken a slight, again I reiterate the word slight, new musical direction with this release, that is not reason enough to knock it; of course "Nihilistic Vision" is evil thrash metal as fuck, but this I find just as appealing to me due to the fact that I can fully appreciate the musical range and influences of the Swedish underground; which is a beast that constantly feeds upon itself...
What's my take? Damned fine album!