The Mire

Anmeldt av Eddie Rattlehead
(Rob Mules Records, 2021)

Karakter: 5/6

Deception_The Mire.jpg Often bands which go through more than one life, usually under a different name, end up worse than their original self. The Norwegian melodic blackened death metal act, Deception, are an example of the opposite, on their 3rd full length, in the 9th year of their existence, with only 2 founding members and under a different moniker yet stronger and more convincing, packing plenty of melody and tasty technical riffing despite not too great production and some inconsistency in songwriting, "The Mire", nevertheless, delivered with grit and conviction which speaks of even better things to come.

When Marius Ofstad (vocals, rhythm guitars), Sindre Wathne Johnsen (lead guitar, vocals), Patrick Ivan Rørheim (bass) and Einar Petersen (drums) started up back in 2012, debuting with "A World In Fire" (2013) EP, they named the ensemble Art Of Deception, persisting as such through the debut full length, "Shattered Delusions" (2016), both releases on on Crime Records, as well as through "Path Of Trees" (2018), already on Rob Mules Records. Only with the departure of Ofstad and Rørheim as well with the arrival of the guitarist Hans Jakob Bjørheim (Johnsen taking over all vocals) did the Norwegians shortened their name to Deception (2019), sealing the move with a very death metal "Epidemic" (2019) EP as a hardbringer of a new full length, despite it being significantly different from "The Mire".

Any musician or writer with even a passing grasp of marketing stratagem understands that you should start and end well with a great content in the middle, for an overall impression of an excellent work, consequently causing any duds to be easily overlooked. Deception doesn't do that on "The Mire", choosing to open up with two very similar undercooked tracks which, nevertheless, allow the listener to familiarize themselves with the sound: VADERish BEHEMOTH death metal bathed in DIMMU BORGIRian symphonics. Had they turned it into a formula for the remaining 8 tracks you'd be looking at a much lower karakter but, thankfully, already "Institution Ablaze" presents more of their technical melodeathly side for more value while the latter DEATH dripping "Internal Breeding" is a first fantastic cut on the record. Deception does get a little formulaic down the road, even within that wonderfully catchy framework but all of that is forgiven with the arrival of the magnifiscent "Excavation-Burial Of A Child" where you can clearly hear that someone had listened to a lot of HYPOCRISY with more twists and turns than MACHINE HEAD's "Wolves". Somehow the closer "Asphyxia" both capitalizes on the melodic values of the predecessor and manages to be a different animal, so it is safe to say that the two cuts are my favorites. You can hear influences ranging from OPETH to DREAM THEATER, the aforementioned Machine Head, PANTERA, GOD FORBID and MONSTROSITY, to name but a few.

Despite the questionable production, where the guitars lack punch and definition and the symphonic synths often drowning out everything else, Deception scored a home run with "The Mire" and I think you'll agree if and when you give the last two tracks a chance of implanting themselves in your subconscious.


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