AEON – Rise to Dominate

AEON‘s Rise to Dominate is only the band’s second album due to the unfortunate drawbacks of several label and lineup changes throughout the band’s near ten year existence. Hailing from Sweden but bearing little resemblance to fellow countrymen GRAVE or DISMEMBER, AEON‘s influence owes more to American death metal with MORBID ANGEL, DEICIDE, and MALEVOLENT CREATION serving as obvious reference points. Lyrically, the band makes no bones about their vehement hatred towards Jesus, god, and all things Christian and holy, as titles such as “Godless” and “Living Sin” make that point crystal clear. The sound on Rise to Dominate is punchy and in-your-face, and EDGE OF SANITY‘s Dan Swano does a commendable job of capturing the band’s anti-Christian conviction on disc. Lead shredder Zeb Nillson also provides many of the album’s highlights with his solos on the aforementioned tracks. “Caressed by the Holy Man” and “Luke 4:57” display the band’s catchiest and most effective material, with both songs delivering, a driving, crushing groove sure to send the holy running for cover. If there’s any downside to Rise to Dominate, it’s originality as there are times when the band veers a little to close to their idols for comfort. “You are Nothing” and “No One Escapes Us” are practically remakes of MORBID ANGEL‘s “Where the Slime Lives” and “Hatework.” But AEON has nonetheless come a long way in establishing themselves as contenders in the world of death metal, making up for lack of originality with heapings of conviction and precision. It ends up resulting in the perfect album title as the band continues their Rise to Dominate. (Metal Blade Records)

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