Frozen Soul Glacial Domination
As the new generation of American death metal bands continue their meteoric rise in the extreme music scene, it’s clear that Texas powerhouse Frozen Soul continue to be one of the most talked about bands in this new wave, and for good reason. After turning countless heads with their excellent 2021 debut LP Crypt of Ice, they’ve been on an endless wave of touring, quickly amassing many diehard fans in the process. As such, their sophomore follow up Glacial Domination is releasing to high anticipation and high expectations, and while it’s in many ways quite different from the straight-up, no-frills old school death metal sound that won so many over with their first few releases, it’s still got plenty of the killer riffs and overall savagery of previous releases while still providing shades of something a bit more sonically evolved.
Pulling heavily from the mid-paced, chugging low-end brand of death metal from legendary bands such as Bolt Thrower and Obituary, Frozen Soul aren’t interested in offering something brand new as much as they are paying tribute to one of the heaviest forms of death metal there is - and they do a damn good job executing that here. With a driving urgency and anthemic nature on display on all of the album’s 10 main songs, it’s easy to see why they’ve had plenty of crossover appeal into other music scenes as well, and could fit just as well on a hardcore festival as they do a fully stacked metal bill. That widespread appeal is made even broader with co-production from Matt Heafy of Trivum, whose presence can clearly be felt in some of the newer dynamics brought to the table here. While the general framework of sledgehammer heavy OSDM is still the backbone of Frozen Soul’s sound, there’s clearly a bigger emphasis on variety, both in an injection of vocal variation and the addition of many more melodic moments via a much bigger helping of guitar solos than previous releases from the band.
Along with this shift towards more dynamics in their songs comes a much cleaner and polished overall sound for this record, which has both its advantages and drawbacks. While there are plenty of moments on this record that sound absolutely HUGE thanks to this and it certainly helps highlight the shift towards more melodic guitarwork, I do find myself missing the more raw, stripped down production of the band’s previous releases. There was a hard hitting bite to that material that’s doesn’t feel nearly as present here, and it can sometimes take away from how hard the record hits in general. Some of the songs feel somewhat indiscernible due to this and listener fatigue at times sets in by way of everything blending together.
That being said, standout songs like the absolutely crushing title track and epic closer “Atomic Winter” stand as some of the best songs Frozen Soul has released to date, and are master class examples of modern death metal in both songwriting and execution. While not every song brings the same level of excitement that the aforementioned do, there’s at least not any full-on misfires here either, thankfully, and I’m happy to say that no wholly unnecessary sonic elements (specifically clean singing) have been thrown into the mix for the sake of commercial appeal. There’s something to be said for sticking to your strengths, and Frozen Soul seem fully aware of this.
Bottom Line: Glacial Domination might not be the full-on showstopper record that fans were hoping for, but it’s definitely got its share of standout moments and stands overall as another quality slab of modern death metal from these Texas hellraisers. While I definitely prefer the more raw sound of previous releases, there’s a feeling of evolution here that has me excited to see where they plan on going next.
13 commentsPost Comment
Ok Smelliot. HA!
Paint by the numbers Bolt Thrower? Get new ears
Not even close to Zulu level.
Vocals aren't my cuppa tea. The only thing that is my cuppa tea...... Is my cuppa tea. 2 sugars please
are you sure about that? are you SURE about that
I just can't for the life of me figure out who the f*ck this is for aside from the more mainstream rock festival crowd that's a little curious about metal, but doesn't like screaming that much, who also likes pop and a dab of country? To be real, this is probably one of the most off-brand albums reviewed for this site in recent times.
I'd smash that bbw bassist idgaf. Plumperpass let's do it!
I'd say im a fan of the modern death metal scene but this album was straight up boring.
Music is generic and boring but the end of that frozen effigy video is f*cked up and pretty wild.
Any day now there's gonna be a band called Slowly We Rot or something and they're gonna be obituary worship and not even have lyrics and be just hardcore kids doing a gimmick/tribute but decibel will hail it as the future of death metal and so will you retarded cretins
Saw this band in Buffalo with Black Dahlia Murder. Was talking to the bassist and mid conversation she rips ass. It was loud. She acted like nothing happened and it smelled like spoiled meatloaf.
"Any day now there's gonna be a band called Slowly We Rot or something and they're gonna be obituary worship and not even have lyrics and be just hardcore kids doing a gimmick/tribute but decibel will hail it as the future of death metal and so will you retarded cretins" This review is a 6 out of 10 but alright go off buddy
This is paint by the numbers Bolt Thrower worship; just listen to the real thing. There is no low end on this one and the bassist's feet smell.