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When Poland's death metal/black metal scene is discussed, certain names come up a lot. Vader, Behemoth, Vesania, Decapitated, Lost Soul, Graveland, and Dies Irae are often mentioned, and another band that has contributed to Poland's credibility in the death metal/black metal department is Crionics -- who angrily maintain their take-no-prisoners stance on their third full-length album, Neu Throne. Crionics haven't sacrificed anything in the viciousness department; their combination of death metal and black metal elements stills goes directly for the jugular and makes no apology for it. That said, Neu Throne is a slight step ahead for the bandmembers creatively, and their use of keyboards and synthesizers has a lot to do with it. Neu Throne, which was recorded in late 2006 and early 2007, isn't the first Crionics album to use keyboards and synthesizers, but this time those instruments stand out more -- and in doing so, they give parts of this 43-minute CD a more overtly futuristic edge than Crionics had on their previous recordings. Some death metal and black metal purists might complain about the prominence of those keyboards and synthesizers and insist that they have no place in extreme metal, but truth be told, Crionics are still a dense, harsh, ferocious sledgehammer of a band. It would still be a stretch to describe Crionics as a true example of either melodic death metal or symphonic black metal -- Neu Throne isn't melodic enough for that -- but it would be accurate to say that Neu Throne sometimes uses elements of melodic death metal and symphonic black metal without taking it all the way and becoming truly, genuinely melodic. Skull-crushing bombast is still Crionics' specialty, and there is plenty of it on this decent addition to their catalog.

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