In between touring, working on his other project, PAIN, and his producing duties, HYPOCRISY mainman Peter Tagtgren has introduced A Taste of Extreme Divinity to the world, and it is a throwback to the ole’ death metal days. Everything has some old school feel to it, from Peter’s old death metal style, to the old HYPOCRISY logo on the special edition disc, and the cover art by Kristian Wahlin (aka Necrolord).
“Valley of the Damned” starts the album exactly where Virus left off, and Peter executes more of his death metal vocals on the entire disc instead of the screeching eagle screams he has incorporated in the later HYPOCRISY albums. “Hang Him High” continues the journey of catchy songs with The Fourth Dimension-style solos thrown in. These songs allow the listener to appreciate the great songwriting the band has achieved, as “Solar Empire” delivers a catchy “grunt-a-long” chorus. Blastmaster Horgh finally gets to show off his machine gun-like precision on “Weed out the Weak” before the band goes into another catchy and melodic masterpiece. The album wanes a bit towards the middle but finishes strong as “The Quest” is reminiscent of songs from the self-titled album, with lush keyboards, melodic solos, and the mid-paced feel that HYPOCRISY was known for. “Sky is Falling Down” is a perfect closer to this album, filled with a brutal beginning, melodic main verse, and a decrescendo leaving the listener yearning for more.
HYPOCRISY experimented a little with the nü-metal sound on the dreaded Catch-22 album, but A Taste of Extreme Divinity fuses the old HYPOCRISY style with the newer, more melodic efforts; the result is a combination of enjoyable death metal without resorting to gimmicks or over-technical guitar wankery. This trio is stronger than ever and gives old death metal fans something to look forward to in the live setting. (Nuclear Blast Records)