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Skeletonwitch

Beyond the Permafrost (Prosthetic)

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The mere presence of a track titled "Soul Thrashing Black Sorcery" says everything you need to know about Beyond the Permafrost. It's the third release from Skeletonwitch, the death-thrash-power-metal beast that emigrated from Columbus to Cleveland a couple years back.

Frontman Chance Garnette hacks up low-register rage from his gut. When his lyrics are intelligible, they're quick, violent images of displaced eyes, severed heads, and emerging evils. And the music matches.

Flashing serious chops, the quintet invades like a raiding party. Guitarists Nate Garnette and Scott Hedrick rotate between speedy riffs, bang-your-head grooves, and glory-or-death harmonies. In a mere three minutes, "Sacrifice for the Slaughtergod" charges through so many different styles of metal that you won't know whether to mosh, play air guitar, stage dive, or flash goat horns. But don't worry about looking foolish if you wind up doing all four -- you won't be alone.

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