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The Mechanics of Perilous Times
Label: Retroactive Records
Ultimatum is a Christian thrash metal band that has been around for sixteen years, based out of Albuquerque, New Mexico. They have remastered this recording that was initially released in 2001, adding three bonus tracks. Sean Griego pounds out a relentless stream of sledgehammer rhythms on the drums while Tom Michaels fills the low end with his booming bass guitar. Guitarists Robert Guitierrez and Steve Trujillo have no problem laying down one series after another of crunching power chords. Vocalist Scott Waters sounds like a cackling, demonic gargoyle spewed forth from the bowels of the Earth, only he is indeed praising God in all his glory.
The booklet that accompanies the disc includes lyrics to each track, which many listeners will appreciate as Waters vocal style takes some getting use to before you can comprehend the message. The band also lists appropriate scripture texts to study for greater understanding of many of the songs.
"Perilous Times" sends out a warning that is no less relevant today as Waters screams out ". Hatred grows bold, persecution begins. Wars and rumors, rage and death is all around. Natural disaster and destruction abounds" with the band developing a musical maelstrom in support. The pace of "Greed Regime, Inc." undergoes several changes that keep the seven and a half minute interesting throughout, while expounding on placing more value on riches than on faith, asking ". Can we reduce Almighty God to an indulgent Santa Claus?".
Other highlights include
a raging cover of Vengeance Rising's "Burn" with it's ". burn, Satan, burn
..." refrain and the instrumental "Muta Mitlu" that gives each musician
a chance to burn. "The Purging" is a confessional hymn that strips away
the sins of this life to humble oneself before God, the Father Almighty.