Review by Paul Monkhouse for MPM
Thirty-two years after they formed and twenty-eight after they released their second, final, album, Detritus are back and what a return.
The Bristol thrash legends burned brightly and briefly during their short life but recent events have reignited the flame, leading them to regroup and record this latest opus.
As ‘Myths’ shows clearly, the band have matured and grown in the scope of what they do and whilst the old, raw power of the material is still there you can also see the more progressive elements that were coming to the fore before they went their separate ways being more integrated into this new iteration. It’s an incredibly heady mix.
Given the gentle nature of the brief, instrumental opening segment ‘Myths of Redemptive Violence’ you could be fooled into believing that the band had mellowed with age but when the huge and heavy guitars kick in at the start of ‘Bright Black’ you know they’ve lost none of the old fire.
Full of force and authority, vocalist / bass player Mark Broomhead sounds like a voice from the ancients, a Viking War Chief rousing his troops from deep and timeless slumber to go into battle.
The whole track is roaring attack on the senses, both broad enough to destroy anything in its path yet surgically precise, slicing into key areas of the listeners conscience.
‘Tale of Sadness’ eschews the all-out assault of the previous track and goes with a much more considered and thoughtful approach, touching at times on late period Beatles trippiness.
Make no mistake, this is a heavy track but it’s packed with a wonderful melodic sensibility that shows the aforementioned progressive bent of second album ‘If But For One’.
Similarly, ‘Call Me Human’ holds back from the full-on thrash that first marked their emergence all that time ago, but is equally crushing in its heaviness, the guitars of Michael Bryzak, Andy Neal and Paul Newington-Wise a formidable team that pounds as drummer Andy Bright turns the remains to dust.
The epic and show stopping ‘Exoria’ is a remarkable and ageless musical piece of storytelling. Seemingly as old as the desert sand that fill the Holy Lands, it’s thick atmosphere and sense of overwhelming might is both intense and enveloping.
With a mixture of keys and guitars, the tapestry is woven and shows a band unafraid to push themselves. Recent single ‘Bloodstained Glass’ goes for a different feel altogether, it’s spiky, crawling and jerky pattern unnerving before taking off at high speed near its conclusion.
Both ‘Pharisee’ and ‘The Game’ are brawling heavy hitters, at once piledriving and yet masterfully shot through with many layers of sound that pierce like shards of glass splintering outwards.
It’s then down to ‘Forever Soldier’ to draw an end to this first chapter in a new book, as it brings together the controlled fury so redolent of Metallica’s ‘One’ and ‘Enter Sandman’ mixed with the complexity of Opeth and the unpredictability of System of a Down.
This isn’t purely a cut and paste job, the band copying elements of their favourite bands, but more a tapping into influences and putting them through their very own filter to produce something welcomingly familiar but also breathtakingly captivating.
Almost three decades between albums might be a long time but the wait has been well worth it. Detritus are back, have something to say and are as loud and vital as ever.
Myths” available 19th February on vinyl, CD, download and all popular streaming services. www.embryoindustries.com