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Whitechapel - This Is Exile

Label: Metal Blade Records
Format: CD
Released: 2008
Reviewed By: The Goat
“This Is Exile” starts off with the blasting “Father of Lies” and it is obvious Whitechapel is ready to leave devastation in their wake. Whereas “Somatic Defilement” mixed several different elements, “This Is Exile” goes more for the deathmetalhead's throat and seeks to separate head from neck by way of ears. As you may recall, I was a big fan of their previous death metal industrialcore debut. I was quite surprised to see them release another album so quickly and on a different label.
Obviously, Metal Blade saw a good thing here as well. “This Is Exile” is definitely a refinement of their previous work. It will certainly appeal to metal heads that are looking for more extremity in their day to day grind. The title track demonstrates some of the changes that are evident in the Metal Blade signed Whitechapel. It is a sleeker and meaner monster than before. It has a feeling of being more focused as well as being a way to showcase the diversity of their sound.

Listen to “Possession” as an example, it is fairly straight forward but it maintains a pace and variety that will keep the ear guessing. There are some classic death metal elements in the song structure yet it keeps the song interesting and brutal. “Exalt” does the death metal shuffle that will be sure to crack skulls and break necks (paramedics be on the ready). Feel the momentum as it builds with each riff on “Death Becomes Him” and you can feel the tension and release as it demonstrates to the listener that death metal can be darkly beautiful.

All in all, Whitechapel have constructed and delivered one deliciously demonic album that captures the fact that brutality does not have to be all blast and noise in order to bring a listener to their knees. “This Is Exile” is a fine entry into the Metal Blade catalogue and carries a tradition well.
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