Friday, March 18, 2016

Through These Gates - In The Eyes Of The Prophet (2013)

The destruction that one grand sound can create.  It can make the floor crumble, and have people running for cover.  It can turn the sky black, and have make everyone cry for salvation.  But sadly, that punishing sound will crush them to oblivion.  Well that's what Through These Gates has created with In The Eyes of the a Prophet, the second album by the one-man Blackened Death Metal band, created by Michael Pendergrass.  The 11 track album feature some blistering riffs,  blast beats that keep pounding away, and some keyboards to expand Through These Gates' sound.
On "Distant Shadows Arise", we are greeted by a deep/hellish voice, before our face is ripped by the relentless guitar work of Pendergrass.  The onslaught continues on "Dreaming In Darkness", as the blast beats get more intense and those blackened-death riffs continue coming at you like the horde of the unholy.  The slow melancholic strings fit perfect to end the track.   Then we got "War", a nice short track with a great epic sound.  Of course "Legion" follows next and continues laying waste.  I really love the riff in 1:20, it was really catchy.  And by the 3:00 mark, those riffs start getting crazy.  "Demons of the Rising Sun" is by far my favorite track.  It's everything that I love about blackened death metal.  The part in the 2:00 mark, reminds me of Rotting Christ.  Or at least gives me that vibe.  The piano in the end just came out of nowhere for me, and that I find awesome.  "Enslaved" ends the album with a dark ambient soundscape.  It definitely feels like a journey into the abyss.  Or if you just walked into a cult performing a ritual.  Some singing in the middle, but done in a melancholic way.  And the whispering adds a more brooding atmosphere.
In The Eye's of the Prophet is very well made album that doesn't need to be overly produced, or overly polished.  I'm really impressed in how the sound feels so huge.  Like, how there are parts where it feels very cinematic.  I like to think that Through These Gates is more than just trying to be brutal.  There are a lot of dynamics and layers in Through These Gates' sound, which makes it stand out.  Especially in a live setting.  And don't expect some shred fest.  Everything doesn't need to be super technical to be "metal".  As long as you give it some heart and power, then you'll totally get something that feels real.  And that's what I really love about In The Eyes of the Prophet.  As awesome the production and mix is, it doesn't have that trendy/generic sound that I hear at Hot Topic, or on Uranium and the new Headbanger's Ball.  What a lot of young musicians can learn from Pendergrass, is that if you work really hard on creating your craft, you can come up with something that really sticks out.  And what is more awesome is that Michael Pendergrass didn't need a full band to create such a killer album.

This album gets "5 Hitlers Punched in the Face".

And here's some live footage of Through These Gates.