Whenever someone mentions Australia and heavy metal in the same sentence, it's usually to say that the country as a whole has been absolutely crushing the scene the past few years. The country seems to be literally breeding gnarly band after gnarly band, and as a fan of heavy music, I can't get enough. But one name in particular comes to mind whenever the two topics are converged. One name takes dominance over every other as the best of the best, the kings of their scene. They are one of few bands that has quite honestly never disappointed a single time - either live or on record - they are THY ART IS MURDER, and they are back with a fucking SICK new record entitled "Dear Desolation."
I'm just going to say it now and get it out of the way: Dear Desolation has quickly become Thy Art Is Murder's best album to date. Everyone who knows me knows I've been a tremendous fan of the band since just before the release of "Hate" back in 2012, and have been very fortunate enough to see and meet the band multiple times since then. So needless to say, I've put in many hours of listening to TAIM, spreading across the bands previous three full lengths and of course, infinite death. But Dear Desolation is finally among us, and I can honestly say that this is the record Thy Art Is Murder fans have been waiting for. This is the record that years worth of writing and touring has led to, and holy hell is this record a roller coast of awesome.
"Slaves Beyond Death" kicks off this ten track masterpiece, and it is the perfect way to led you into the warpath that Dear Desolation is about to take you down. The tone and sound of this song sets the stage perfectly for what you can expect from Australia's absolute finest. Thy Art have certainly taken their time to make sure that each part of this song and record was placed exactly where it was meant to be, and the proof is right in the pudding. If the sick riff that kicks off this song doesn't get you pumped, you must not have a pulse. "Fire In The Sky" slows things down a bit in the beginning, but don't let that fool you - it's one of the albums heaviest tracks. It's packed with crushing guitars, brutal vocals, and just an overall damning sound. The ending to this song is fucking killer. If you appreciate not just death metal, but just extreme metal in general - this song and record are going to speak to you, no doubt.
Other notable songs off this beast of an album include "Puppet Master," "Into Chaos We Climb," and "The Son of Misery." But the song that instantly - without the slightest doubt in my mind - became my favorite off this record (and possibly my favorite TAIM song overall?! is it too early to say that?!) is without a doubt the title track "Dear Desolation." I haven't had a song catch my attention like "Dear Desolation" in a long time - every single thing about it is absolutely perfect; I fell instantly in love. Between the dark theme the song has going for it, the sick guitar solo, and those killer breakdowns - it was the perfect combination of everything that makes this track the best one off the album, so it was appropriate to name this record after this song.
There's honestly no way to put into words no incredible this record is unless you hear it - surely there will be people hesitant to believe that it is as good as I'm saying it is. But you really need to hear Dear Desolation to appreciate just how Thy Art Is Murder (somehow) managed to accomplish outdoing all of their previous material. No words will do this album justice, so with that, I'm going to simply include a link to the music video for "Puppet Master" - give it a listen, and then go do yourself a favor and find a way to listen to the rest of it; you will not be disappointed. TAIM have accomplished something many bands will attempt to imitate and none will be able to reproduce - Dear Desolation is one of 2017's most crushing and powerful records.