Deicide - In the Minds of Evil (2013)
Review by Trevor Proctor
It’s hard to believe that it’s nearly 24 years since Deicide burst forth from the burgeoning Floridian death metal scene with their self-titled debut. Courting controversy and using every means of garnering publicity - Glen Benton’s famous squirrel interview was carried out by the UKs’ premier indie mag NME. It wasn’t long before they had become standard bearers for death metal worldwide. Deicide released two iconic albums in their formative years, albums that went on to become influential, worldwide bestsellers, highlighted by their occupation of spots two (Deicide) and three (Legion) in Nielsen’s Soundscan charts for best-selling death metal albums.
This is Deicide’s eleventh release and first to feature guitarist Kevin Quirion - it will be released by Century Media on 25th November and produced by Jason Suecof at Audiohammer Studios, Sanford, Florida. Prior to recording Suecof stated he wanted to try and recapture some of the old school magic from Legion whilst mixing it with modern influences. The fantastic album cover features the portrait “Power of the Mind” by Australian artist Simon Cowell, thankfully not the idiot currently poisoning the world of pop music - now that would be a weird combination.
Overtly anti-Christian, contentious, and far from modest Mr Benton may not be to everyone’s liking but let’s not let a mouthy, opinionated frontman obscure our opinion of the band’s music.
The title track starts the album with Benton quoting Batman “Some men just want to watch the world burn” and so begins four minutes of classic Deicide, in fact so begins 36 minutes of classic Deicide. It’s a quality straightforward death metal album and their strongest release in many years.
“Between the Flesh and the Void” and “Beyond Salvation” are two highlight tracks that exhibit skilled, assured but not overly technical guitar solos. Steve Asheim’s drumming throughout is both proficient and exemplary, in fact it’s the driving force behind Deicide’s maelstrom of upfront honest death metal.
Glen Benton’s vocals sound stronger and are spat at the listener with more conviction than anything since their famous Legion era.
There’s no need to analyse this release track by track, it’s better than what you’d probably expect from a Deicide record. There’s the usual, expected slew of anti-Christian titles such as “Trample the Cross” and “Kill the Light of Christ” and there’s nothing earth shatteringly original or genre bending about this album. That’s not to say I didn’t like it, I thoroughly enjoyed this lesson in death executed with conviction by one of the most influential death metal bands of all time.
I’ve criticised bands in the past for not evolving or progressing their sound but Deicide aren’t a band who need to change their sound to remain integral to their respective musical genres, they just need to do what they’re best at, and with “In the Minds of Evil” this is exactly what Deicide have achieved. This (surprisingly) is one of the years strongest death metal releases – if you want a dose of no nonsense, genuine, straight up death metal then ask Santa for this.
In the Minds of Evil is released by Century Media on November 25th.