Via Nocturna, 31.05.17
So much music, so little time. I've only heard Evoking Eternity about five times, so I don't know the album in and out, but I have no trouble recommending German Morgon's second full length.
The band's first album, Black Light of Liberation, also received an approval when it was re-released in 2015. Evoking Eternity continues in the same course, with melodic black metal with a devilish touch. However, the sound has got a facelift, where some excess mud is chiselled away.
Evoking Eternity is a few minutes and a couple of sounds longer than the predecessor, ticking in at approximately 45 minutes. The biggest changes, however, are said sound as well as the replacement of the drummer. The sound of the debut is more woolly than what I remembered. As such, Morgon is better off with the flaming clarity they now radiate.
Drummer Ghrym has been replaced with M., who also does a good job, although I think the drumming may becomes slightly staccato at times. He is, however, technically skilled and does a lot of nifty stuff. Guitarist and vocalist Haglas still articulates his vokills in a rasping guttural manner, and the guitar still pours out dark, melancholic, gloomy and ominous melodies, reinforced by thunderous bass.
The legacy after Dissection is noticeable, but not too distinct. Morgon is not alone in the world considering their expression, but they once again deliver passionate zeal and battering blow. Their melodies give the songs an individual touch and there's a lot of variation within each song. The sequences with double bass drums in ending Evoking Eternity, separated by calm, woeful guitar, are excellent, and Glorification of the Black Flame with its atmosphere and bellowing vocal, is scorchingly devilish. However, there are many other sequences that excel, such as the wonderful closing tones of Monuments of Transcendental Power, for example.
For those who know Thulcandra, Evoking Eternity is more fiery and fervent than what Ascension Lost was.
KVLT, 26.05.17 Rienaus is Finnish for Blasphemy, which explains why two Finnish black metal bands have this exact name. This band comes from Espoo, just outside of Helsinki, and is the only really active of the two.
When the band released the debut Aamutähdelle in 2014, I had it on the radar for a while, but it still escaped my clammy, pale white and bony claws.
Where the debut sounded overly sharp, Saatanalle is more rounded and resounding.
Rienaus was started by Mavrofos (Azazel) in 2009, and released a few demos before other members eventually joined in. Mavrofos handle both vocals, guitar and bass on Saatanalle, while Faen plays drums. (“Faen” being a common and versatile Norwegian curse word, much like “fuck” - derived from or short for “fanden”, the devil.) J.H is listed as a backing vocalist, and the chick Possessed Demoness (Anguished) screams her throat hoarse on the song Polku.
The band's black metal is of a melancholic and partly melodic style, while thunderous riffing, pitch black drumming at various rhythm and pace and screaming black vocals makes the label “melodic black metal” superfluous. With 37 minutes, the band waste no time getting the job done, and in the middle of the album, the interlude Välisoitto calls for idolatry in a short break with saddened church organ. There are a few sequences that hammer away straight ahead while I lose my concentration, but for the most part, the band combines quite good sombre melodies with more than approved black metal furore.
Below you can hear Saatanalle's two first songs.
Unfortunately, I don't get to show you the nice doleful and dim song Kuolleen jumalan silmien alla.
The band plays instrumental progressive melodic metal, and tries to make a twist where violin largely replaces the rhythm guitar.
Cydemind, however, does use lead guitar to help carry out the melodies on Erosion, but it lacks a lot of what we know as a riffs.
Classically schooled violinist Olivier Allard is a competent man, and it does sound sort of cool with a violin virtuoso in the ranks. The instrumentation provides some associations to violin-based music like Lindsey Stirling. (Don't ask.) The progressive nature of the music has a jazzy vibe that causes the melodies to appear as a series of random tones stirred together in a pot. Not a black witches cauldron, exactly. The music is inoffensive, and has no sting as such. The righteous sorcerer blends the tones together at a quiet pace under the summer sun while mild breeze plays with the golden locks of hair hanging wavy under the brim of the hat.
The music is as harmless as the cover suggests, and while the unicorn grazes peacefully, I stifle a yawn. Erosion, and its violin in particular, is well-performed, but purely subjective, this is not for me. The music is too toothless, and melodies and structures feels quite randomly shaped. I have every reason to assume that the latter will improve with growth over time, but personally I don't intend to sacrifice more time on this. That's nevertheless a subjective choice. My biggest, near-objective objection, however, is the use of synthesizer. Why incorporate an artificial, synthetic instrument along with eminent violin, proficient bass and percussion? An insult to fashionable instruments. They could as well have given the rhythm guitar a more full-bodied foothold, for it's just as thin as the islamic myth of 72 virgins in the afterlife. Using the synth as replacement for grand piano is acceptable, though.
The band thinks outside of the box, I'll give 'em that, and delivers a somewhat nifty and thorough creation. Bigger fans of progg/jazz and maybe Ayreon should try this out on their own, while fans of extreme metal exclusively should find something else to listen to. Neat. Tidy. Too neat and tidy.
The song Tree of Tales can be downloaded for free from PureGrainAudio.
Caverna Abismal Records, 31.05.17
Almost a year ago, I finally heard Malícia, the debut album of the Portuguese duo Tod Huetet Uebel.
The album was first released more than half a year earlier.
They released their first EP in 2013, a year after the band was formed, and are now ready with their second EP.
Behind a cover inked in blood, N.A.D.A. presents two songs called Nå and Da.
The band has developed a bit, but Deathspell Omegas Paracletus, which I mentioned as a reference in connection with Malícia, is still a kind of common multiple.
Nå, Norwegian for “Now”, begins with sore and desperate shrieks of soulful pain, and angered, straight for the throat riffing. The song has a tincture of claustrophobia and depression, without slipping unnoticed into either kaleidoscopic or depressive/suicidal black metal. The mood of weeping and gnashing of teeth is still thick in this rather short song at not much more than four minutes, and it's performed with a ripping drive.
Da, Norwegian for “Then”, is a monster in duration in comparison. This one lasts for a bit over 17 minutes and compels the listener with a mood of discomfort, whether the riffs are partially naked or if they swirl in more intense chaos. Sofia Loureiro from Vaee Solis contributes with tormented wailing that don't make the song any less rigorous or influenced by painful hysteria.
Rather than embroidering more, I'll allow you to listen in silence. I have such a taste for for this EP that I treat it with the highest grade. A bit generous, perhaps.
That's all we got time for in May. See you in June.
Blood Harvest, 26.05.17 Desekryptor to all appearances consists of three corpses, half dissolved by putrefaction.
The trio comes from Indiana in The States, and this is their second demo.
The first, titled Demo 2016, was recorded last year and released early this year. Chasm of Rot lasts for 18 minutes, presenting five death metal songs from the deepest, most decaying corner of the underground.
The band reels off dark and grotesque death metal with a rancid stench of septic sewage in both grim riffs and frothing guttural phrasing. The music is aggressive and violent, as if these zombies have been locked up and forgotten in hell's lower regions since the time before Hell's portals were first raised. The metal is unholy and bloodthirsty, filthy and vile, odious and threatening, malignant and squalid, nefarious and dubious.
The sound is dirty and filthy in a somewhat woolly fashion that fits the music rather well, but that is better suited for the more atmospheric sections than in the more intense sequences. The songs have some cool parts that hints at promising potential, but for now, this is a rowdy and ostentatious display of rather raw and unrefined death and decay of the type we've heard so many times before. Hell, even better.
Therefore this rather strict grading. The music is cool enough, but I need a little more substance before I open my wallet. As always: Listen and judge for your selves!
If bestial death metal is your thing, this obscure cassette is released in 200 copies.