While their name references the Norse god Odin, and their new album title is a quotation from the Book of Isaiah, this is a band very much focused on the issues of today. The second full-length release by Allfather, who hail from Kent in the UK, is a rallying cry and a targeted piece of aggression.
Allfather are described in their promo as “sludge-laden and hardcore-infused death metal”, and this is pretty accurate. Riffs are thick and filth-encrusted, yet with a classic death metal feel, while the vocals are undoubtedly inspired by hardcore. But there are plenty of other influences too; for example first track “Black Triangle” contains echoes of American black metal act Cobalt, with its Western acoustics and doom-laden passages. And there’s a death-n-roll feel throughout the album, an infectious energy that has you nodding involuntarily. I like the hardcore vocals, but this is a very riff-driven sound with the guitars high in the mix. All this adds up to a sound that is somehow coherent and uniquely Allfather.
And All Will Be Desolation is an album which has been carefully crafted. Each song is well-structured and segues nicely into the next, with pace changes and surprises so that the energy never dips. It also demonstrates a compositional confidence; for example first single “Citadel” begins with a 30-second drum solo, while “Lampedusa” is over eleven minutes long, the first five of them given over to a folk tune which is given the death metal treatment to surprisingly emotional effect.
Kicking off with “Black Triangle”, it’s time to embark on your journey into Allfather’s new album.
In terms of lyrics, Allfather are a socially-conscious band who have put a lot of thought and passion into their themes and words. “Black Triangle” deals with the failure to oppose creeping fascism – inspired by the Nazi T4 program, but frighteningly relevant in our own times. Meanwhile, epic final track “Lampedusa” addresses the tragedy of the refugee crisis in Europe with power and poignancy. Allfather are vocal about what they stand for – on social media and through their merchandise – which includes a “Riffs Against Fascism” patch that I must get for my battle jacket.
Angry, confident, immersive; Allfather have delivered exactly the type of album we need right now, and they deserve every success.
And All Will Be Desolation Track Listing:
01. Black Triangle
03. Lord Betrayer
04. By Sword, By Famine, By Plague
05. Jackals Night
06. Inherit The Dust
Run Time: 42:14
Release Date: September 7, 2018
Record Label: Rotting Throne Records