Album Review: Cruentus – “Fake” 8.7/10 (Death/Thrash)

Written by Carcassbomb

  • Cruentus
  • Fake
  • Death/Thrash
  • Italy
  • October 15, 2019
  • 8.7/10

This is just the month of Italy for Noob Heavy, this is like the fourth Italian metal band I’ve covered in the last month and the quality has been superb each time across many genres. Now I’m covering one of Italy’s veteran bands, Cruentus, who have been making music with various lineups since 1989, which is a year longer than I’ve been alive. Their new album Fake, is their first LP since In Myself in 1996 so a lot of people are excited for this long awaited return. Well, I’m happy to say this is the first thrash album I’ve enjoyed in a long time.

Artwork by Maria Ritarenatti

One problem I’ve always had with thrash is that most of it, to me, sounds like pissweak-borderline-nu-metal-dad-rock but Cruentus have a lot of focus on pure intensity, it feels like every second is contributing to the momentum of the record. It’s pretty fucking brutal and puts death at the forefront of their sound. There’s also more technical elements that immediately brought to mind one of my favorites, Coroner. This is a very experienced band who have clearly refined this album down to a pure core, it’s safe to say if you’re looking for your next headbanger then you’re in good hands here.

They really stick the landing on this album. The last three tracks have a huge energy behind them and really cements the sentiment of the final track “See You On The Top”. It’s not just bravado however, this section of the album actually begins with a short acoustic track that exhibits some well-learned folk shredding and leads into “The Strain” which is a slower more melodic track that really lets the guttural vocals shine with some of the highest notes on the album. Finally we are left with a second short acoustic track to end it all, this one is more ominous than the last one and is accompanied by some nice brass horns. It’s quite different to how the album started and it’s a phenomenal third act.

Cruentus: Bandcamp / Spotify / Facebook / Instagram

It’s a solid album front to back, sealed by great album art showing a sense of duality that perhaps this album also explores in it’s variance of mood. I love this representation of the two sides being blurred towards the middle, the white wolf struggling against the black horned wolf. Thrash adjacent bands typically have shitty or cringe artwork. This is another way that Cruentus diverge from the litany of mediocre releases, by having solid art from a true to form artist.

This is a bloody good album.

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