Murdryck is a Swedish band, which could explain the 'semi-melodic' tag. Here and there I can hear influences from the melodic scene of the nineties and quite often there are atmospheric arrangements. Yet, the majority of the music will indeed rip your skull and feed on your fears. 'As The Moon Bleeds' and 'The Ascension' rage on in sheer ferocity, reminding me of acts like Dissection or Sacramentum.
'Swallowed By The Ages' seems a little slower at first but in no way lacks brutality and brute force. The drums play a big part in that sound, being loud and heavy, even in the blast-beats driven passages. I really dig that since it takes me back to the glorious days of the 'World Domination' samplers which were loaded with this kind of musical; extremities. These Swedes have been listening to them, I'm quite sure of that.
Of course, as important as they are, the drums are but a part of this album and I really have to compliment the bass player here. With his thrash metal sound and attitude this guy adds a lot of credibility to the whole thing. Furthermore, those are some pretty sick guitar solos, another sign that Murdryck are influenced by old school thrash metal as well as the ancient gods of the blackened hordes.
This album breathes old school all the way and highlights in songs like 'Slaves Under A Dying Sun', the eerie 'Under Torn Constellations' and the massive 'Metamorphosis'. Obviously I'd recommend this gem to any old schooler out there. You rarely get something as vintage, twisted and well-varied as this. So check it out and meet me in the pits of hell...