What initially might seem as an odd union actually works wonders here on the debut from the trio known as Serpentine Dominion. This little side project features three very notable names in extreme metal, guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz of Killswitch Engage, George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher of Cannibal Corpse and former The Black Dahlia Murder drummer Shannon Lucas. For their self-titled debut, the band have churned out what is little more than an EP at just under 30 minutes of music, but it's a lethal & enjoyable set nonetheless. After a cool "Intro" which features some stellar melodic guitar playing from Dutkiewicz, the trio rampages in with the full on death metal attack of "The Vengeance in Me", chock full of Fisher's bellowing growls, acrobatic drumming from Lucas, and furious riffs courtesy of Dutkiewicz. The somewhat catchy "Vanquished Unto Thee" sees Adam lending his clean vocals to combat Fisher's monstrous growls, a tactic they also use on the raging "Sovereign Hate". "Divide, Conquer, Burn, and Destroy" is a total death metal barnburner, complete with some of Dutkiewicz' best riffs on the album, and the speedy "On the Brink of Devastation" brutalizes everything in sight in just under three minutes. The guitarist once again shines on the blazing "Jagged Cross Legions", firing off a wealth of shredding lead work, super crunchy riffs and screaming pinch harmonics, while also adding his melodic clean voice to offset Fisher's menacing death growls & grunts. The gorgeous guitar instrumental "Prelude" takes the listener into the brutal finale "This Endless War", a majestic yet violent track with a great mix of vocal styles, tasty guitar playing, and jackhammer rhythms.
Based on the small yet lethal sample of what's on display here, Serpentine Dominion are really onto something, so let's hope these guys intend to make this a part time gig in between all the other things they have going on in their musical lives. Impressive!
- The Vengeance in Me
- Vanquished Unto Thee
- Divide, Conquer, Burn, and Destroy
- Sovereign Hate
- On the Brink of Devastation
- Jagged Cross Legions
- This Endless War