Album Review: Thy Fallen Kingdom – Fear the Hunter

Thy Fallen Kingdom - Fear the Hunter

Thy Fallen Kingdom [Singapore]
Fear the Hunter
2014
Full Length
Independent
Thrash Metal

Thy Fallen Kingdom holds a rather special place in my personal metal history, being one of the first local bands that I witnessed live in my first underground show back in 2009 at the Mahligai Manis pub (along with other local greats such as Suicide Solution and Deus Ex Machina). All That Is Left was one of the first local releases that I bought, and having missed their 2010 EP Undemocratic Society, it has been 5 years since hearing something new from the band. With an almost completely refreshed lineup since my first encounter with the band (other than guitarist Akhbar), the band this year releases their debut full length album Fear the Hunter.

Mental Oppression sets an ominous mood for the listener, and with the clean guitars and the disturbing pick scratches at the background, one is reminded of the haunting style of bands like King Diamond and their horror stories. But things intensify quickly with Army of 1, as the band quickly presents to listeners their high-octane style of thrash metal.

Immediately, one is reminded of of early thrash bands such as Exodus and Slayer from the start, with the speed and the riffing style of guitarists Akhbar and (semi-new addition) Christian. At the same time, the energy and intensity presented by the band reminds one of the hyperactive style of Teutonic bands like Destruction and Kreator, especially in the relentless drumming of Aip, providing much of the energy on the record. The influences are numerous, with the title track Fear the Hunter even giving a nice crossover touch with the punkish, d-beat intro before going into full on Exodus mode.

The personal highlight here though are the vocals of Aidil, who presents a vastly different style from Dave on the very first TFK studio releases. While Dave’s vocals are a rather gruff, singing and semi-shouting style, Aidil on Fear the Hunter instead is aggressive as fuck, as he barks out the lyrics, bearing rather strong resemblances to greats such as Schmier or Mille, and along with the relentless speed and intensity presented by the instrumental section, the comparisons to the Teutonic legends can get rather strong at times. His singing even bears some resemblance to Dave Mustaine, with that constant snarl that he has in his vocal execution, like on Imperious Regime.

So how does this compare to past releases of the band? There is certainly more aggression present on Fear the Hunter, and compared to All That is LeftThy Fallen Kingdom‘s debut is a nice balance of all the influences that have gone into their melting pot, and is a perfect display of the growth of the band as musicians and songwriters.

[xrr rating=5/5]

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