Alright everyone, now that 2020 has finally come to an end, you may let out a big sigh of relief, but please make sure to fully enjoy that moment because it’s important to understand things have the potential to get far worse, and the calendar year itself won’t be to blame.
Alternatively, things have the potential to get better, but fair warning, if hope is what drives you, please consider not reading past this point …
Twenty-twenty-one was supposed to be a year full of positive change and new beginnings, but virulent, blackened-death-metal outfit Werewolves are here to pull the rug right out from beneath our collective feet. On January 29, the Australian trio will release their caustically titled full-length, What A Time To Be Alive, through the dependable Prosthetic Records, and the album does not mince words, only body parts.
Collectively, the members that constitute Werewolves come from other notable, extreme metal projects including The Berzerker, Psycroptic, Abramelin, and many more. These members are no strangers to associating with themes of death, occultism, darkness, and misanthropy, but as Werewolves, they have decided to take things to a nihilistic extreme.
Through the use of merciless speed, venomous vocals, and razor-sharp riffing, Werewolves deliver devastation and drill destruction into the mind of all who dare to listen. These components ignite the hostile opener “I Don’t Like You,” and run like a revved-up chainsaw from the beginning of the album to the very end. In true gore-metal fashion, “Sublime Wartime Voyeurism” discharges Exhumed-like chunks of human meat, later merging into a segment of blackened blasphemy.
Besides the first half of the closing track “They Will Pay With Their Own Blood,” there’s not a song on this album that isn’t driven by lethal riffing and stomach-turning speed. While guitarist Matt Wilcock achieves maximum dexterity on tracks like “Crushgasm” and “Antisocial,” bassist/vocalist Sam Bean sustains an impressive rhythmic backbone, all the while spewing heinous vomit in every direction.
A swirling vortex of double bass and groove take the lead on the thrashing “Unfathomably Fucked,” while drummer Dave Haley provides a barrage of never-ending blasts over the course of this record. From the grinding “Mission Statement” to the foreshadowing “A Plague On All Your Houses,” Haley (also of Psycroptic) delivers a mind-blowing and mechanical performance.
If you listen closely, there are even some Psycroptic-esque, tech-inspired characteristics that come to life through the latter half of “Traitors And Bastards.”
Following the release of their demolishing debut, 2019’s The Dead Are Screaming, plots of land around their home country of Australia began going up in flames. One year later, following the recording sessions of What A Time To Be Alive in early 2020, a little ol’ global plague swept across the planet. With that said, I am urging everyone to be cautious and observant surrounding the release date of this album.
Werewolves crafted this album with the intention to grind down your spirits even further, and even though the trio has been a part of many other extreme metal projects, this could easily be considered their most terrorizing work as a collective.
What A Time To Be Alive is a bludgeoning death metal offering that will provide a soundtrack to the coming years of chaos, carnage, and devastation.
Preorder What A Time To Be Alive here.