Denial Fiend are a not-quite-supergroup of Florida death metal veterans, including vocalist Kam Lee and bassist Terry Butler (both formerly of Massacre) and drummer Curtis Beeson from cult favorites Nasty Savage. Oddly enough, though, the primary songwriters here are Lee and guitarist Sam Williams, who previously played with pop-punk acts Down by Law and Pseudo Heroes. They Rise is the band's first album, and it is a throwback to the early days of (surprise!) Florida death metal, with relatively simple (i.e., not overly technical) songwriting, no blastbeats, and lyrics that are often decipherable (gasp!), for better or worse. All of this stands in stark contrast to the mid-2000s death metal trend toward slick, virtuosic musicianship and production. The songwriting is sturdy enough, but not particularly memorable, while the playing is fairly energetic but somewhat tame by modern standards. The lyrics, meanwhile, are mired in such tried-and-true subject matter as zombies, flesh-eating, monsters, and/or blood (e.g., "Cover Me in Blood," "Let the Blood Flow"). These lyrics are almost defiantly simple-minded and old-fashioned, as they wouldn't have been shocking on a death metal album released in 1987. They occasionally cross over into the realm of comedy, though it's hard to say whether that is intentional or not. For example, the closing track, "The Day of the Undead," includes a fake radio transmission that announces, "It seems that the recent deceased are coming back to life and attacking the living. Government officials are warning people to stay indoors....I repeat: the dead are coming back to life." That quote actually sums up quite a bit about this album.
AllMusic Review by William York
Track Listing - Disc 1