MORS PRINCIPIUM EST is a band who never disappoints. At least to me they are. They are the epitome of Melodic Death Metal done right. Newest output Dawn of the Fifth Era (December 2, AFM Records) has nary a bad moment and the song structures are damn near flawless. Guitarists Andy Gillion and Kevin Verlay have crafted melody lines that leap off the page and bury themselves in your earholes on pretty much every track. Vocalist and mainstay Ville Viljanen sounds as nasty and vicious as ever, and the rhythm section of Mikko Sipola (drums) and Teemu Heinola (bass) are the glue holding everything together as they have been for over a decade now.
After a brief into “Enter the Asylum” the band gets cracking with “God Has Fallen” a song guaranteed to have heads banging and steering wheels getting drummed on like crazy. The dual lead at the beginning is so nasty it should be illegal. “Leader of the Titans” is like revving up a muscle car before you hit the gas: it will smoke you and leave your ass in its rearview. Some programming lends an atmospheric touch to “We Are the Sleep” and once again the riffs are just insane! “Innocence Lost” also has some symphonic elements to it but at its core it is a bone-crushing song.
One of my two favorites is next in “I Am War”. This is actually the first number I clicked on just to see what would happen. Well what happened is I liked it. A lot. And I played it…a lot. Over and over, actually. It is a tailor-made song for countless Maestro playlists going forward. A relentless pounding is the best way to describe “Monster in Me” because it doesn’t let up for a second. A brief respite is found in the interlude “Apricity” but that’s short-lived because here comes “Wrath of Indra” looking to take your head off and mount it on the wall. A four-minute smackdown, this is one I think fans will fall in love with sure as I’m standing here. “The Journey” is one of the more melodic pieces on the record, but the brutality doesn’t waver one bit.
Closing the album is my other favorite “The Forsaken”. I almost got pissed at these guys when I realized they made me wait to get to such a fantastic song. The duo of Verlay and Gillion absolutely own every inch of this one and it is a face-melter for sure, especially the fucking solo. Bottom line is this: MORS PRINCIPIUM EST have their most solid line-up in years, and I hope that with Dawn of the Fifth Era they can reach a wider audience and get on a U.S. tour because, quite frankly, this is a band every metalhead should be talking about. Pick up your copy on December 2 and let us know what you think. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “The Forsaken”, “I Am War”, “Wrath of Indra”, “God Has Fallen”, “Leader of the Titans”