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The Triptych
Artist: Demon Hunter  
Label: Solid State Records
Released 2005

I almost passed up The Triptych.  I still love Demon Hunter's self- titled debut with the notable exception of first video "Infected."   Which explains why I found the follow-up "Summer of Darkness" mostly forgettable: to me, "...Darkness" was Infected re-written thirteen times. I wasn't exactly feeling inspired to pick up the new Demon Hunter when it came out, even if the three different covers were all HOT in their metal HOTNESS.  Did I mention that the three painted covers were HOT?

Fortunately, I heard the record in a friend's car and found myself impressed. Fifteen bucks and repeated listens later I feel confident to say that Demon Hunter's third record is easily the best of their three records.  I am EXCITED for this band again.  The sound  is still a blend of the heaviest of heavy riffs with Ryan Clark's  alternating growls and melodic vocals, but the mixture doesn't feel forced or awkward like it did many times on Summer of Darkness.  A choir opens the album singing "The Flame The Guides us Home,"  transitioning directly into the crushing "Not I."  From there on it's  a meaty journey through HEAVY and surprisingly groove-worthy  
technical metal broken up by the occasional hard rock ballad.

The strength of The Triptych is Demon Hunter's ability to make every track sound as if it belongs.  The emotive anthem "Deteriorate"  and the album-closing "The Tide Began To Rise" do not sound out of place next to the pure metal songs.  It's an incredible and difficult balancing act that DH must be commended for achieving.  The recording itself sounds great (especially the old school sounding double bass kick), thick and bruising. Throw in a killer cover of Prong's classic cyber-core industrial metal track "Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck" (which brings me back to the days of Argyle Park and Circle of Dust) and you've got yourself a winner.  The Triptych cements Demon Hunter's place as one of the top alternative metal bands today.

Ryan Ro /



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