Death Denied, Through Waters, Through Flames (Sarcophagus Records 2022)

Polish metal band Death Denied release their third long-player this week, Through Waters, Through Flames.

Originating in Łódź, Poland in 2009, Death Denied plays a grungy form of Southern-tinted Metal. That is not what you usually expect to hear from a Polish metal band, is it? These guys do it right, hitting all the grooves with an expert touch, along with plenty of blues-infused melodies and engaging change-ups. After putting out an EP in 2011, they released their first full-length set in 2014, Transfuse the Booze, following up with their sophomore effort four years later: A Prayer to the Carrion Kind. The new one is a high water mark, I think, and a great listen all the way through.

The set opens with “The Apostate Soul,” which has a very doom-feeling few bars at the front. A peppier groovy hook sets in quickly to take you through the rest of the tune. “High Priestess Of Down Low” is next, and here the band flashes its thrash teeth a little with a few rapid flourishes. These high energy cracks are juxtaposed with a reflective cooldown and unexpected syncopation. This song is a cooking cauldron. “Lesser Daemons” rolls up extra bluesy and walks you down a dark alley. The seductive lead break toward the end is a beautiful thing.

Other stand-out tracks for me include “The Machine,” which has an irresistible charging quality that is unrelenting, even with a tempo change. I also gravitated toward “Behind The Surreal” for its dark and dingy feel that put me in mind of grunge bands of old. Fantastic song. And if you are looking for the Southern Metal sound, “Concrete Cathedrals” is the tune for you. The album goes out on the eight-minute thrummer “Nocturnal,” and that has to be on the hit list, too. The saxophone is a bold choice and it is absolutely stunning in this song. I really like this album – I am putting it in the queue so I can hear it again. Recommended.

Through Waters, Through Flames is out on Friday, April 7th, and you can hear it on the usual streaming platforms. Bandcamp will have the digital for download. You can also listen to Death Denied’s other albums there.




© Wayne Edwards.

Death Denied, Through Waters, Through Flames (Sarcophagus Records 2022)