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Impending Doom

Having conquered worldwide stages as part of vital package tours like Vans Warped Tour, Thrash N Burn, Metal Alliance and Scream The Prayer, Impending Doom entered the studio to create their fifth album with a singular new prize in mind: respect. Death Will Reign is a ripping masterwork from the Southern California inventors of “Goreship.” Impending Doom simultaneously redefine and transcend the Deathcore subgenre with a focused, mature and multilayered heavy metal album.

Impending Doom has crafted a stunning, deliberate and unrelenting collection with a sense of purpose, drive and continuity. Death Will Reign is the culmination of all that has come before, mining the bleak darkness and “scare” factor of last year’s Baptized in Filth and the dynamic fury of There Will Be Violence and The Serpent Servant. All of those elements are injected with the return of the gritty rawness found within the unpolished grind of Nailed. Dead. Risen, Impending Doom’s squealing cult-classic debut that introduced the world to their unique combination of reverent worship and sick gore-core, dubbed Goreship.

“We wanted this album to sound very natural and unpolished,” explains longtime bassist David Sittig, a part of the lineup since before the first album’s release. “There’s no crazy digital stuff. There are no fake drums. We wanted it to have the feel of our first album with the songwriting from the last one. We’ve gotten better at song structures and so forth over the years, but we wanted to recapture that old-school vibe, too.”

Impending Doom’s passionate approach to extreme metal continues to incorporate the strains of death metal, thrash metal, metalcore and deathcore that has been their stock-in-trade since 2005, with the modern metal approach of Slipknot, Lamb Of God and Fear Factory. There are also shades of the warm atmosphere for the Deftones.

“This is a really heavy album because that’s the type of band we are. We’ll always have heavy stuff,” notes Sittig. “There are a lot of different moods on this album, ‘though. There are heavy and aggressive guitars but we’ll put some more melodic stuff in the background. The album is covered in that type of atmospheric stuff. We wanted the album to flow and be like a journey when you listen to it. There’s a lot going on.”

Among those extra sounds: violin, cello and other string instruments, performed by real players as opposed to keyboard generated samples. All of it is stitched together by the massive vocal presence of Brook Reeves, Impending Doom’s founding vocalist and longest consistent member. Co-founder Manny Contreras returned to the band following a sabbatical that saw him touring as guitarist for Bleeding Through, reinvigorated and ready to help recharge the band. The chemistry between Reeves, Contreras, Sittig, newer guitarist Eric Correa and powerhouse drummer Brandon “Btown” Trahan is palpable all over the album. The writing process was the quickest and most fun of any Impending Doom record, despite the end result being full of darkness.

“You can hear the good time we had making these songs when you listen to the album, but it is a very dark sounding album at the same time,” Sittig says. “We went into the studio with 17 completed full songs. We only recorded the 12 best that we all voted on. Previously we had gone in with 7 or 8 songs and struggled to make it to 10 for a full album.”

Producer Will Putney was a part of that decision making process, leaning on his years of experience working with bands like For Today, The Human Abstract and Vision of Disorder fully realize Impending Doom’s artistic, creative and sonic vision for Death Will Reign.

“He’s worked with a lot of our friends bands. He has an ear for what’s happening right now,” Sittig says of Putney. “He’s a good friend, plus he’s in the band Fit For An Autopsy. Him and Manny go way back. He was our first choice and he was stoked to do it, so we just went for it.”

Tracks like “Beyond the Grave,” “Rip, Tear and Burn,” “Doomsday” and “My Blood” are as direct, evocative and powerful as the song titles suggest, squeezing every last ounce of energy out of the performers with dynamic strength. Death Will Reign is uncompromising in its assertiveness, swiftly surpassing many of the band’s contemporaries.

Impending Doom stand at the brink between their youthful past and an ever-solidifying stature as kings within a subgenre they helped to invent, boldly declaring an outspoken faith in the unseen while delivering top-tier performances all around the world.
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