Kill Ritual return with fourth album All Men Shall Fall, which wastes little time in delivering a big fat sonic punch to the face. Songs are top heavy with the shred attack guitars of founder and sole lineup survivor Steven Rice and the mighty, clean vocals of David Reed Watson. Their approach and sound on All Men Shall Fall is occasionally reminiscent of Iced Earth, with whom they are currently on tour along with Sanctuary. After an interesting slow syncopated introductory tune, Kill Ritual let rip with three blasters: “This Addiction”, the title cut, and “Megalomaniac”. Watson can definitely make listers feel the lyrics; the next song “Save Yourself”, one the slowest of the bunch (closer “Kage” and “Dead Man On The Water” being the others, mostly acoustic tunes), is a great showcase for his emotional range and is a wise contrast alongside the thrashier numbers. “A Re-imagining” is a spectacular track, with Progressive tunings adding interesting elements to the Thrash alongside a powerful Watson chorus. Some bands suffer from the revolving door of line-up changes, for others change is necessary for evolutionary purposes. Rice seems to have found the perfect voice for Kill Ritual with Watson; one wonders if a consistent line-up for the rhythm section would take the band even further. Closer “Kage” might be the weakest cut on the album, especially following a pair of killers like “Sins” and “Lies”, never managing to achieve the liftoff that the others do. Regardless, All Men Shall Fall is still a very strong album likely to win more listeners to the cause.
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