Photos by Olga Kuzmenko
Released by: NUERRA RECORDS
Release date: Out Now
Dan O’ Grady: Bass/Vocals
Danny Hall: Guitar
Claire Percival: Drums
1. Throne of Bones
2. Salvation in Sacrifice
4. Birth of Suffering
5. The Cleansing
6. Exhume the Venom
8. The Gates of Hell
Irish Metallers Dead Label are back with their second studio album ‘Throne of Bones’ under Nuerra Records. It has been three years since the debut of 2013’s ‘Sense of Slaughter,’ and after nonstop touring and polishing, Dead Label has evolved. ‘Throne of Bones’ is a blistering album filled with an immense amount of brutality that includes members Dan O’ Grady (bass/vocals), Danny Hall (guitar) and Claire Percival (drums). When I first listened to this album, I could clearly visualize it in a live setting, where you can simply let go of all inhibitions and just headbang/mosh your sorrows away.
The album kicks off with the titled track “Throne of Bones” with an eerily slow introduction. Slowness does not last long where a Thrashy guitar riff enters that soon explodes into a Melodic Death frenzy. This track alone describes the central aesthetic of Dead Label, where you can hear classic Thrash Metal elements mixed with a modern Metalcore style as well. “Salvation in Sacrifice” silently ignites as it grows to a powerfully aggressive tune. This is perhaps the heaviest track on the album as it is continuously merciless from the beginning to end.
One of my personal favorite tracks on the album comes in next with “Ominous.” It opens up with a haunting guitar riff and sustains a suspenseful Melodic rhythm. It is not as aggressive and straightforward as the prior two, as this one adds a sinister blended medley to the mix. The album slows down dramatically with “The Birth of Suffering” as it opens with a charming acoustic introduction. It’s emotive and welcoming at first and progresses into a heavier tone, however, maintaining the same structure. An engaging track and to me, it is one of the stronger pieces. It is produced quite well that includes a darkened guitar riff until the captivated conclusion. “The Cleansing” comes in next, and it is the shortest track of the album clocking at just about two minutes in length. To me, it sounds as though it would fit with a film score as it carries out a journey-esque conducive atmosphere.
“Exhume the Venom” picks up the pace and adds an old school Hardcore sound. It is brutal, crunchy, and moves in a different direction than the first half of the album. As the album almost reaches a close, “Void” comes in with a strong guitar riff that morphs into a full blown instrumental jam. Stylistically it moves towards Groove Metal as the song bleeds out the emotion of letting go and not giving a damn anymore. I can guarantee this song will be played live, or at least it should. Finally, the album concludes with the best and longest song “The Gates of Hell” clocking in just under nine minutes. It deceivingly enters as though it is a silent film with a fast pace piano flowing by as an interesting guitar interlude joins shortly after. As the song progresses along, the vocals scream as though the emotion of hell and devastation is rising.
‘Throne of Bones’ is a step up from their debut as it showcases several different techniques and styles and it works. There are new elements in each track which would make anyone want to listen to it more than once. If you like screams, truculent riffs, and pounding chaos; then this is for you. Dead Label will be playing at the Metal Days Festival in Slovenia on July 29th; maybe you should see it for yourself as well.
Recorded in East West Studios, Los Angeles 2014
Produced/Engineered: Chris Rakestraw
Produced: Micheal Phelan
Written By: Zenae D. Zukowski