A worthy entry to their canon

Call of the Wild is the new EP from seminal Australian black/thrash nomads Deströyer 666. Deströyer 666 are well known for releasing EPs and singles that contain just as much consistency as their albums do.

Opener ‘Violence is Golden’ kicks off proceedings with an incendiary heavy metal riff, and a call to arms from inimitable frontman and guitarist K.K. Warslut. It’s clear from the outset that this track will become a classic, and most likely a staple of their live set. The main riff treads similar ground to much of 2016’s Wildfire; both paying homage to the band’s influences yet reaffirming what has by now become Deströyer 666’s trademark sound. Warslut’s innate sense of timing, and classic solos make this one a great way to open Call of the Wild.

‘Stone by Stone’ opens with an infectious speed metal lead guitar phrase that soon mutates into the song’s main riff. Felipe’s bass and Perra’s drums provide solid anchorage for the aural speed as guitarist/vocalist Ro and K.K. trade vocal lines amid soaring leads and solos, before that skilful use of timing kicks back in and the last third shifts to familiar epic territory. The aforementioned vocal displays give this one a clear identity, with Ro’s black metal-influenced shrieks providing a counterpoint to K.K.’s gruff vocals.

‘Call of the Wild’ is introduced via a slow, brooding opening before a lead spirals its way out, and bridging into a veritable onslaught of a verse riff. This was the preview track to the EP and it’s easy to see why; a solid array of leads, a catchy vocal melody, and the near-traditional anthemic Deströyer 666 refrain. All of this encapsulated into a form that hearkens back to influences, like Venom, who blurred the lines between rock and roll and heavy metal. It’s something of a gamble, one that works very well.

Closer ‘Trialled by Fire’, is a new recording of the classic from 2003’s much heralded Terror Abraxas MLP. One thing that needs to be stressed here is that this is very much a studio recording of the track as performed live. There are enough differences in performance, and altered lyrics, to give this one its own identity. Some listeners may view this move with some trepidation, and understandably so, as there have been myriad re-recordings that fall slightly short of the original. But in preserving the track in its current iteration, as opposed to a simple re-tread of the original is a bold one, but it’s one that pays off.

As mentioned, Deströyer 666 have become known for releasing EPs and singles that echo their full-length albums in quality, and Call of the Wild is no exception. In some ways, it represents something of a logical progression from Wildfire, but in others it sees the band covering some new ground. Over the years, Warslut and Deströyer 666 have taken their own path, and done things in their own uncompromising fashion; this release sees them continuing to do just that. A worthy entry to their canon.

1. Violence is Golden
2. Stone by Stone
3. Call of the Wild
4. Trialled by Fire