Apart from being the frontman of the highly successful CKY, Deron Miller has always had an affinity for death metal and has spoken highly about many of the bands within the genre.
After a chance meeting in 2006 with drummer extraordinaire Tim Yeung (Hate Eternal, Divine Heresy, Morbid Angel), the seeds were sown for World Under Blood. Fast forward to 2011 and the project is now a reality: their debut release Tactical has hit the world with a hefty impact.
The opener “A God Among Waste” doesn’t waste any time and attacks with a healthy barrage of double bass, blast beats and tight intricate riffs immediately announcing itself and shows that World Under Blood takes no prisoners and mean business.
Tactical could be labeled melodic death metal. Not in the Gothenburg style, but more in the vein of death metal with melodic tendencies throughout. “Pyro-Compulsive”, “Under the Autumn Low” (featuring a blistering solo from James Murphy) and “I Can’t Stand His Name” showcase the emphasis on technicality with Yeung’s drum parts taking centre stage and counterpoint guitars from Miller and Luke Jaeger. “Into the Arms of Cruelty” and “Purgatory Dormitory” also utilize more of a Bay Area thrash vibe mixed with the aforementioned sound. The only complete deviation is the closer “Revere’s Tears” with its “Fight Fire Like Fire”-esque acoustic intro leading into the grooving assault of a finale.
It’s not hard to hear a bit of CKY’s sound in the material especially during a lot of the melodic verses with stacked harmony vocals and guitar parts. Some may turn their noses up at the notion of that but as a whole it only adds a bit of colour to a brutal death metal barrage. Miller also pulls off some decent shouting like an old 80s vocalist and he adds some reasonable death growls throughout. Tim Yeung’s drum performance on Tactical is a whole lot better than what he did on the last Morbid Angel album, that’s for sure. And overall, James Murphy’s mix is organic and vibrant for a death metal album and generally gives the instruments room to breathe.
As a whole, Tactical is a solid foray into the world of death metal for Miller and company. It’s proof that musicians can wear different hats and deviate from their main projects into something completely different with positive results. A hidden beauty about Tactical is that it may be a stepping stone for people who would not have touched death metal before and lead them into a new found territory. All we need now is the long awaited Death tribute album that Miller and Murphy have working on for years to finally get a release.
1. A God Among the Waste
2. Into the Arms of Cruelty
4. Dead and Still in Pain
5. Purgatory Dormitory
6. Under the Autumn Low
7. I Can’t Stand His Name
8. Revere’s Tears
9. Wake Up Dead