The Black Dahlia Murder

Miasma

[5] It’s basically a given that any band touted as being part of the “New Wave Of American Metalcore” will sound like At The Gates circa 1996-proving not only that history moves in cycles, but also that At The Gates recorded some timeless shit. Which isn’t to say the Black Dahlia Murder-a Detroit band who might as well be expatriates from Sweden’s underground-are playing on nostalgia for their second album. If anything, TBDM, like their East Coast bros Darkest Hour, are one of the few American units creatively weaving their home country’s thrash and hardcore influences into At The Gates’ melancholy riffage, punch-press drumming and serrated vocal style. Sounding like it was recorded inside a blast furnace (which is to say, the way all good, dark metal albums should sound), Miasma shreds from the opening track onward, its sound-world of darkness, mayhem and bile compressed into the sort of running time (34 minutes) all bands who want to make a statement should strive for. And, as if to raise the bar a notch higher than their low-end riff hailstorms and double-kick drum prowess already do, the band go all out with the solos, making a return to the sort of squiggling, tuneful pyrotechnics we haven’t heard enough of this past decade-except, of course, for that new Darkest Hour album. (METAL BLADE)-Aaron Burgess