Of all the bands who have released their debuts recently, and have begun their careers spreading riffs around the world, few have been as solid as Gatecreeper. Hailing from Arizona, the band uses very tuned-down guitars and riffs galore mixed in with solid writing to create a very solid first album, “The Sonoran Deprivation”. “Craving Flesh” opens up the album, and introduces most of the basic aspects of the band’s sound, including the guitars, their decent, but not overdone, production, and the riff based writing style the band uses. This song also has a very haunting tone, giving it a dark edge. Up next is “Sterilized”, which has a very solid opening riff. This song is heavy as hell, and boasts some really strong writing. This song continues the momentum picked up by the first song, and this momentum isn’t lost during the album’s run time.
“Desperation” has a fast and heavy opening, and this speed continues for the song’s entire duration. This is a shorter track, and the band chooses to not slow down at all, and instead make it one of, if not the heaviest song on the album. “Rotting as One” has another solid riff as it’s opening. The writing on here is tight as can be, making this track one of the best on the album. “Stronghold” is a track that lives on the heavier side, and stays heavy even as the pace changes. The guitar work is extremely solid on this song, and this is again just another example of how strong this group is. Up next is “Patriarchal Grip” which has a fade in intro, leading into a solid lead guitar. The pace on this one quickly picks up, and has some nice riffs that match pace.
“Lost Forever” has a strong opening riff, that leads nicely into the main body of the song. This song is a bit slower, and shows off some groove influence. The pace changes on this song give it some variation, and the writing is, as expected, well-done. This leads into “Flamethrower”, which has more groove influence, and more riffs. The writing on this one does and especially good job blending the music and the vocals together. “Grotesque Operations” ends this album, and does so very well. While this is another solid Gatecreeper track, it is the longest on the album, and with the extra room, the band adds to the sound from the rest of the album, making this one of the must-listen tracks from a must-listen album. This is a very good album. The band shows on this album just what they’re about, and if you’re a fan of death metal, what they’re about is something you’ll probably like.
Overall Score: 9.0/10
Review by Sam Hookom