Nuclear War Now! Productions, 15.02.17 Rites of Thy Degringolade was formed in Canada 20 years ago by Paulus Kressman,
a musician with a number of previously irons in the fire, including live performance for Incantation.
He is currently involved in three bands, including Amphisbaena.
Three albums were released before an extended hiatus commenced in 2006. Before that time, three albums and three minor
releases saw the light of day. The first album as a one-man band, but eventually with a growing number of members.
For over a decade, it's been very quiet from the band, but finally the silence is broken. The band was revived in 2015,
after ten years in hibernation. Paulus and J. Wroth, brother in arms since 2001, has been
joined by two new members, and declare their return with seven minutes long The Universe in Three Parts.
Despite a long career and experienced members only, this demo has an unmistakable home made charm. The music is a not
particularly complicated mixture of black and death with rather spooky moods. The title could indicates that we're looking
at three-course serving, but we're only served one single track. The song have decent riffs and alright flow, but it's not
all that impressive. The vocals are ominous and rasping but in fact quite clear. The sound is so-so on this release which
was first handed out on cassette on concerts in Oakland and Chicago back in October.
The cassette that's now being released, ain't much more than a testimonial to new activity. The music is decent enough, but
all in all it's a fairly superfluous release. Hence the rating. It should be said that this is a completely okay demo.
A new album is under construction, and a new version of this song will be on the album.
With better sound and a full album to form a more complete musical universe, the future can be interesting.
Regret is a weakness, but it's allowed to have a bad conscience. I have a few dozen albums that makes up a digital stack
of guilt. Albums I've promised to present, but that's been left in the dust behind the rat race of new releases.
Deus Vult is one of those who have ended up at the bottom of the stack, until now.
Orthography-apostles, linguistic warriors and other grammatical pedants will froth at the mouth as Munich's wolves have
omitted the mandatory apostrophe. Let them split all the hair they want.
The German band was establish in 2013 or 2014, depending on the source, consisting among other of folks from
Equilibrium. Deus Vult is the band's debut, with a title that's ironically referring to a Latin
phrase used by christians during the first crusade. However barbaric the means and no matter how much injustice was
done in the name of religion, one could always blame it on being “God's will”. Any event was of course beyond any doubt
caused by the “fact” that “God wills (so)”, or «Deus vult».
The band's metal is black and ominous, but also melodic and at times rather epic and atmospheric. Not atmospheric as
in monotonous, soaring and above average keen on woodland wilderness, but rather lightly vicious in the form of partly
powerful moods. Moderate use of keyboards and backing vocals creates a somewhat symphonic appearance, without taking
it to the pompous max. Their satanic mid-tempo glee, or should we I say schadenfreude, is not very cold and sadistic but
rather performed with a quite pagan touch, just as the heroic aspect isn't fully majestic. Nuances, nuances. Rather this,
quite that. Their brutality is neither toothless nor throat-stabbingly sharp but the expression is chilly, biting and
proud, with asocial undertones of hostility. Not black as coal, but more fiery and reckless than what folk/Viking acts
and more diluted post-black practitioners normally demonstrate.
The Germans presents nine songs that sounds good. The expression appeal to me, and the sound is adequate. The songs are not
forged of very memorable riffs, but this ain't an attempt at being entirely melodic either. The melody lines are
still much better than a lot of what I come across. The album has a very good flow and I've certainly got a taste for it.
Independent, 17.01.17 Parius from Philadelphia was started in 2011. The band released a demo the same year, and their first
album Saturnine in 2015.
The EP Let There Be Light for me becomes an interesting first meeting with exciting music over four songs
wrapped up in a quarter of an hour.
The band plays melodic, symphonic and reasonable technical thrashed death metal with decadent dramaturgy and a tinge of black sting.
The title song begins quietly, before an intense segment kicks in. The sound sounds in excess compressed just as the
detonation occurs, but the music soon changes focus to metal with a dynamic touch of Baroque, somewhat resembling of
the direction on Winterhorde's last work. Parius' a bit rawer appearance and frequent use
of blackened vocals at times makes me think in the general direction of Carach Angren and Fleshgod
Apocalypse. Some clean vocals are also used in a quite becoming fashion. Earlier Arsis and The
Black Dahlia Murder member Ryan Knight contribute with a concise solo before the song A Shade
Darker Than Black takes over with among other restless fiddle and propelling waltz.
Although the vocal works, it does to a certain degree become an objection, as it sounds a bit “modern”. The clean vocals
at times becomes a tad soft in the title track, but it's still technically good, and the Egyptian ethos in the voice
toward the end of the track is cool. The blacker vox ain't really jet black, but the vocals come more into its own when
it touches upon growl. If Louis Thierry handles all these voices alone, that alone is nevertheless quite
Since I'm first nitpicking, I may as well mention that the dynamic range of DR5 ain't enough to do the music full justice. As
mentioned, it's the most intense sequences this affect, while the more dynamic sequences aren't afflicted to the same extent.
After two songs with evocative drama, the brief and beautiful instrumental interlude A Somber Dream is
initiated with piano, providing some associations to Italian horror, before Another Kind Of Reckoning
concludes with more striking and evocative black/death symphony and a guest-solo delivered by Michael Keene of
The quartet has worked closely with Chris Kelly (Alustrium), who's been engineer and co-producer, and
has mixed and contributed to programming, plus delivered additional guitars. In addition, hired gun Michaela Nachtigall
pull off a fantastic performance on the violin.
I seriously considered upping the rating to top score, for Let There Be Light is a wonderful EP that is clearly
better than just good. With a little more experience, Parius will most likely become increasingly noticed.
MDD Records, 10.02.17 Thormesis is a German band that turned ten last year. The men have previously released four albums,
and the line-up have been remarkably stable.
I haven't been a witness to the band's past my selves, but what the quartet are reeling of on Trümmerfarben,
can at least be defined as pagan metal of the atmospheric kind.
I'm afraid their pagan is also of the generic kind, for Trümmerfarben unfortunately don't stand out a
whole lot in a positive sense.
The music has melodies, but none of them will go down in history, for the melody lines are in no way particularly memorable.
They are in stead downright mediocre and they're served with lethargic zeal. The expression is in fact very mild and
poppy. Had it not been for signs of erroneous gentle black metal vibes, Trümmerfarben could at times
almost have passed as sleaze rock / glam metal, for the melodies don't have any sting. The atmospheric aspect is also
as tail heavy as only resigned shoegaze can become. The expression is downright worn and faded.
There is very little that appeals during the 50 minutes the nonsense persists. The vocals are up front and yowling,
taking a lot of focus away from music. Something that would have been fine if the vocals were better than the
identity-lacking music. Unfortunately the vocals are mostly lamentable. And to top it all off, the sound is rounded
and toothless. Not that the sound is poor in that sense, it's just pretty inappropriate, especially along
with blackened elements.
Trümmerfarben is a humdrum and completely superfluous release. If Thormesis'
back catalogue is as run-of-the-mill, I'm not the least bit surprised I haven't heard of them before.
Woodcut Records, 13.01.17
The year is 1994 as Blastmor forms Thyrane on his own. He's not doing so with a one-man
band on his mind, but it would take a few years to find the right partners in crime.
We are in Kemi, Finland, close to the Swedish border at the head of the Gulf of Bothnia, and the music that's finally released
on cassette in late 1997 is black metal with a wall of synth, typical for this era. If you acknowledge such as black metal.
The metal has plenty of pitch black satanic disgust, and for my part I see no reason to doubt the integrity.
As the guys finally got ready to unleash their first sign of life, they just as well entered Tico-Tico Studio and
recorded 35 minutes for this demo. The music has a fiery flow with a lot of melody kneaded into it. The melodies, however,
represent nothing but evil, cold, hellish and eerie moods, clearly inspired by acts like Emperor, Dimmu Borgir
and Immortal. The guitars are sharp, the drums run riot and the bass is rumbling somewhere in the abyss, just
like it's supposed to. Meanwhile, Blastmor's vocals rasps in impeccable manners with proper force.
Three of the four songs is about eight minutes long, while the longest clock in on eleven. The quality of the songs are good,
and for being a demo, this must be said to be very good. Even the sound measure up, and that to a far greater extent than
most 90's black metal demos I've ploughed through. In addition, it probably sounds a notch more powerfully now, as the songs
have been remastered by Tore Stjerna.
Woodcut Records released the demo on CD for the first time in 1998, so it has been available in a format that
ain't easier to find in a museum than in the music store, but the original edition is probably sold out long ago. After 20 years,
Black Harmony is again available, and in addition, it's finally out on vinyl as well. If you don't have any
allergies toward synthesizer in black metal, but rather a nostalgic relation to this era, this is a classic gem.