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GROMS - Ascension

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 GROMS, which means "God Rules Over My Soul", has put out one fantastic death metal album. The band hails from Norway, and we all know that Norway usually means quality when talking of death or black metal. The music here is very tasty and original. Very thick and powerful. This is a CD you will want to crank very loud. The production is very good, except for the last song "The Just Shall Live By Faith" which is a song off a demo they did about 6 months before this album. Even though that last song is a good one, it's amazing how much they improved in 6 months! Oyvind Haugland's vocals are what really set this band apart. His growling is some of the best you'll hear. It doesn't sound forced or fake. He does it so well that you'd think that this is the way he would talk all the time. The music as I said is very good as well. Nice and technical like good death metal should be. These guys can slow it down to almost a doom sound, but then kick it in to gear with the best of them. There are no sub-par songs to speak of, but a couple do stand out, like "No One" and "The Riddle". The lyrics are very good and very bold. The main focus on most of the lyrics is wisdom and salvation. Too bad this band broke up after just one album cause we could use some more quality death metal in the Christian music scene. This is a 1994 release, but does not sound dated at all, so don't hesitate to pick it up because of when it was put out. "Ascension" has been re-released twice, with different artwork both times. The first issue (which I have) has the best artwork of the three. (However, the cover I show is the third release, not the cover I have.) Not a whole lot to complain about here. It you can find this album, don't pass it up.  (Review by Matt)

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Well, this again is another band I don't know much about.  I know they are from Norway and that's about all the knowledge I know of these guys.  I believe this is the only thing they released. However, if I am mistaken, don't hurt me!
 
Musically, this band reminds me of a slow version of Incantation.  This is very heavy music with a lot of doom riffs, and some faster ones to keep it going.  Although this is not a doom band by any means.  The styles of the two bands is so identical!  From the placing of the harmonics, to the feeling of the riffs, and even the time changes...you'd almost think they were the same band sometimes.  I wouldn't be surprised if Incantation were these guys' favorite band!  The only thing that really separates the two bands is that GROMS is slower.
 
All we get from this band is 9 tracks, which to me is a little disappointing.  But it's something I have to live with.   I love these guys' guitar distortion!  I think that's what helps to draw me in.  The riffs are crunchy and heavy, and you can also tell that they have a lot of thought put into them.  It's not a bunch of riffs just slopped together like a lot of other Christian death metal  bands sound like to me.  The riffs are what definitely make this band interesting.  The drums aren't slacking either.  They are back doing a good job being the backbone.  A very strong backbone I might add!  The bass is definitely helping keep that backbone sturdy.
 
If you like death metal and you like doom, this is a definite must have!  My favorite tracks on here besides all of them are "From Dust to Dust", "No One", and "The End of Age".  (Review by Biff Bartholemew)

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