After releasing a demo and a subsequent EP, Germany's Sulphur Aeon has unleashed their debut full-length in the form of Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide. Released in early 2013, the trio's first observation just reeks of old school death metal aesthetic, and though Sulphur Aeon doesn't aim to create anything startlingly innovative, their firm grasp on brutal and melodic songwriting makes this a solid purchase for death metal listeners. Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide may not be an earth shattering release, but it does what it does very well, and for that I applaud Sulphur Aeon.
Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide is rooted primarily in old school death metal like Bolt Thrower, Morbid Angel, and Behemoth, but Sulphur Aeon also includes melodic touches and a few doom metal influences to keep the album from falling into monotony. This is first and foremost an old school death metal effort, though, and the suffocating production prevents the album from sounding particularly modern in any sense. M's vocals sound distant and cold, as the use of reverberation gives every grunt a faint echo that suits the music's chilling mood perfectly. Sulphur Aeon create some really killer atmospheres on Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide (just listen to a track like "Incantation"!), and their tremendous capabilities as players make the music even more enjoyable.
Although Sulphur Aeon's debut doesn't contain anything that death metal veterans haven't already heard before, their ability to include subtle melodies and bone-chilling atmospheres into an otherwise traditional form of death metal shows that their talent is above those of most new extreme metal acts. Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide is a solid observation across the board, and an early highlight of 2013 for death metal enthusiasts. Sulphur Aeon is an act to keep your eye on!
1. Cthulhu Rites (1:35)
2. Incantation (4:07)
3. Inexorable Spirits (4:49)
4. The Devil's Gorge (4:28)
5. Where Black Ships Sail (3:39)
6. Swallowed by the Ocean's Tide (4:39)
7. Monolithic (3:54)
8. From the Stars to the Sea (4:38)
9. Those Who Dwell in Stellar Void (4:35)
10. Beneath. Below. Beyond. Above (4:43)
11. Zombi (3:37)