All Out War is a great band for people who love the chunky rhythms of classic Slayer, but want something a little less chipper. They’re surprisingly traditional for something on Victory Records, but having been around since 1993, it’s no surprise that Assassins in the House of God shares few traits with what would fall into that oft-dismissed category today. Even 11 years into a career said to have birthed the genre, they have more in common with the brutal thrash of the 90’s than with the percussion-driven screamo that comprises the metalcore scene at present.
Assassins in the House of God is expectedly brutal, wincingly acerbic, and proudly antithetical to all things complacent. As is their wont, the religious and the political are skewered mercilessly; none are spared on the band’s lyrical warpath. Surely carpal tunnel was instigated and shin splints were suffered over the course of recording their third full-length album, so nimble and hard-hitting is the instrumentation.
But it’s not without its faults: for all of its unbridled heft, the album is light on creative song construction. It relies on the tried and true to carry the entire thing; it’s as though All Out War were intentionally aiming to make something that sounds like it was produced over a decade ago. Good news if you’re a myopic purist who scoffs at the expansion of musical horizons; bad news if you’re a band trying to make a living who keep putting out the same thing over and over.
Assassins in the House of God is good for a couple turns in the pit, but isn’t promising in terms of staying power.
Website: All Out War