Wednesday, 19 February 2020

Cadaveric Possession - Sephirothic Desiccation

CADAVERIC POSSESSION - Sephirothic Desiccation (PUTRID CULT - CD 2020)
I never had a chance to listen to "The Malevolent Predestination" album or "Cadaveric Goatserpents' Coronation" split (with Hell’s Coronation) from Cadaveric Possession, but when hearing "Sephirothic Desiccation" I feel quite interested to get those two efforts also. Cadaveric Possession are Polish duo, which brings us six bestial death / black metal anthems on this new CD and if you're into the harshest, most obscure and primitive forms of this music, which would also create the very diabolic and sinister atmosphere, then "Sephirothic Desiccation" will be up your street. A lot of influences from some Finnish or American death legions, but also from some Polish hordes such as Nekrofukk and Bestial Raids, Cadaveric Possession does not waste time and simply shred from the very first second of their new filth.  
By using the most simplistic means, they crush with a lot of killer slower riffs - and these slower parts are definitely my most favourite moments of their music. When played at the faster pace, the music becomes obviously more aggressive and chaotic, but it doesn't have that sinister aura of slower parts (this is probably why “Seven Bloodsoaked Candles on the Altar” is my least favourite song from this EP, because it’s the fastest piece, but I also don’t like some vocals from it). Frankly, Cadaveric Possession doesn't stand out with anything special from similar type of bands, they are quite mediocre when compared to some... And I cannot say that it would really be an album that I could listen to often. But occasionally, from time to time I definitely am in mood for something so obscure and primitive and as such, "Sephirothic Desiccation" definitely works very well.  
Verdict: 65/100 

Sunday, 16 February 2020

Neolith - I Am the Way

NEOLITH - I Am the Way (MYTHRONE Productions CD 2019)
This is only fifth Neolith's full length album in their nearly 30 years long existence, but if I can be honest with you, I've never paid much attention to the music of this band. I’ve never liked their early recordings, with that boring doom / death metal so typical for the Polish scene of mid to late 90's, which they played then. Also, I'm not a fan of their later album "Individual Infernal Idimmu", from 2010. So, forgive me my scepticism for Neolith's new album "I Am the Way". The only reason why I actually wanted to hear it was a song from the split 7" with Betrayer "Of the Angel and His Orison", which showed me a band whose music was miles away from what they sounded like in their early years. You couldn’t even compare them anymore, so different they sound. And I liked this song a lot, with its aggression, fast pace and death / black metal sound. I hoped to hear something in the same vein here... and I'm not disappointed. 
This new album sounds very good. If I had any complain, then the only one I can think of is my hope to hear a bit faster and more straight forward music. It's not even a complain, but rather that’s what I hoped to hear. But the music on “I Am the Way” is much more diverse, and the majority of it is mid paced at most, with some occasional faster parts. After a while I came to the conclusion that it's not bad at all and in exchange the music becomes more atmospheric and darker. Stylistically it's sort of more modern sounding (in contrast to all that old school stuff I listen to) death metal, with hints of black metal. Comparisons? Arghh, who cares for them. The music is very tight, very much focused on vicious and aggressive guitar riffage, with no interference of keyboards whatsoever, what definitely is good news for me. There's plenty of variety in the sound, from straight forward, malicious stuff to more melodic patterns - but the result is interesting and enjoyable, with very good songs all over the album, with my favourites like “Wanderer Who Bestows” or “Ask and Thou Shalt Receive”. 
Good album then, positive surprise for me. It means I need to get their previous album "Izi.Im.Kurnu-Ki" also and I definitely will one day. 
Standout tracks: “Wanderer Who Bestows”, “Ask and Thou Shalt Receive”, “Irarazakku 
Verdict: 70/100 

Monday, 10 February 2020

Hell-Born / Offence - Hellbound Hearts

HELL-BORN / OFFENCE - Hellbound Hearts (PUTRID CULT - 7"EP split 2019)
It's been nine long years since Hell-Born released their last album "Darkness" (back in 2009), so it's just great to see them back with this new recording, which is "Hellbound Hearts" split with Offence. It's available on CD and 7"vinyl format and I bought the latter, not knowing that the CD has some more songs. Ahhh, who cares... It's too late now. i prefer more collectable vinyl format anyway. 
Both bands did good job for this split and I enjoyed both parts a lot. Hell-Born brings their usual black / thrash metal devastation with two tracks, one of which is a re-recorded oldie called "Hellraiser" from their very first EP from 1996! As for the new version, it is good, of corpse it is, I like this song a lot, although the original one is a bit better, I especially miss those deep vocals from the old version. It's great anyway, shorter, maybe faster, but kicks ass. "Soulrape" is another crushing song, very savage, straight forward and old school... just as it should be. Good to hear this band back in action. 
Offence also sounds awesome, I actually like their part of "Hellbound Hearts" even more, because it's perfectly executed, vicious and kind of obscure and raw death metal, slightly in the Swedish vein, reminding me such Mordbrand for instance. It seems like this band took a great step forward, especially from their debut CD, because their music sounds better than ever before. Awesome riffs, great vocals from Hellscreamaross (he’s also in Witchfuck I wrote about few weeks earlier), dark atmosphere and very nice production... I especially like how they slow down in "A Slave of the Ancient Race", what a killer song it is! I really have no idea why this band hasn't got a wider recognition outside of Poland, as they're better than most of these hyped death metal bands of nowadays. Not my problem though... 
Good split, in my opinion, so get the 7" or CD from Putrid Cult now. 
Verdict: 75/100  

Wednesday, 5 February 2020

Witchmaster / Voidhanger - Razing the Shrines of Optimism

WITCHMASTER / VOIDHANGER - Razing the Shrines of Optimism (THIRD EYE TEMPLE - Split LP 2017)
Splits are always fun to listen to, I like the idea for that sort of releases a lot, even if sometimes the quality of music between bands is uneven. On "Razing the Shrines of Optimism" we have two great bands, but I also have to say that definitely I like Voidhanger's part over Witchmaster's. One part is killer, another one is a bit disappointing.  
The latter band offers basically one solid song of their simplistic, yet very enjoyable and cool thrashing black metal in form of "Permafrost". This song won't surprise you with anything Witchmaster hasn't done before, I also have heard many better songs from them, but "Permafrost" is fine, I like it. It’s very vicious, nasty and insanely fast, but also kind of memorable and catchy track, and it surely is a solid kick in the face. I would definitely like to hear more such songs on this split. But instead we get Einst├╝rzende Neubauten cover, which is nothing I would particularly enjoy, but I suppose it is cool to hear something so different from the band. And more so, three live tracks complete Witchmaster part of "Razing the Shrines of Optimism", but they're nothing interesting, in my opinion. I am quite disappointed with this part of the record then, I wish there was more stuff in the vein of "Permafrost", not some boring fillers. 
Voidhanger on the other hand never disappoints and once again they delivered quality stuff, played in their already recognizable style. Their music is characterized by mostly fast tempos, viciousness, aggression, it all sounds like a merciless whipping, which will drain the body of all its blood. This is pure slaughter and I like it that way a lot. Here you will find three new songs and I cannot even decide, which one I like the most, maybe "Dyskretny urok upadku", which has such a nice old school vibe. And I still remember Fenriz trying to pronounce the title of this song haha. And “Through the Holocaust of Optimism” is also amazing. But everything in Voidhanger's music is top notch - the harsh, but vicious sound, great riffs, pissed off vocals of Warcrimer. Nothing else is needed. Killer band, in my opinion. 
Standout tracks: "Dyskretny urok upadku", “Through the Holocaust of Optimism” 
Verdict: 80/100  

Empheris - The Return of Derelict Gods

EMPHERIS - The Return of Derelict Gods (OLD TEMPLE / WINGS OF DESTRUCTION - CD 2019)
It's been few years now since I’ve bought anything new from Empheris, last time it was "We Are the Ancients" split CD they participated in. But that was back in 2013 (damn!). Empheris wasn't that much busy in these past few years though, they only released a live album and three splits (all on cassettes, which I am not interest to collect), so I didn't really lose much. But finally, a new album "The Return of Derelict Gods" was unleashed in 2019... and I am really, really pleased to hear it, because it's a very good effort... In my humble opinion, this is Empheris' best album so far, definitely their most mature and simply best sounding material. I like a lot of their earlier recordings, sure I do, but with "The Return of Derelict Gods" this band took a step forward, both with the songwriting quality and production. And they achieved that without losing anything from their viciousness, aggression and harshness of old school thrashing black metal - or blackened thrash metal, however you're gonna call it. 
Definitely "The Return of Derelict Gods" can be defined as a very traditional metal album, where the riffage, the atmosphere and the feeling are all deeply influenced by many 80's or early 90's thrash, black and even heavy / speed metal legends. I'm not gonna bother to mention some concrete names, they should be too obvious and besides, mostly such name-dropping is boring. What matters more is how great Empheris sounds on this new album. I absolutely love that archaic, yet insanely fascinating and catchy, viciously punching riffs, which have such a powerful kick that all I wanna do is play the music louder and break all shit around, while banging my skull like a crazy fuck. This music is very fast, Empheris doesn't bring any of these more epic songs, which they sometimes used on the previous albums, but it works very well, as songs like "In the Name of the Unholy Spirit" are a pure aggressive onslaught and the whole content of the album doesn't bore at all. They added a bit more melodic patterns here and there, but did so without compromising and without softening their style. The performance is excellent, I also like Adrian's vocals a lot, I think he sounds better than in the past, more bestial... And as I also mentioned earlier, the production of "The Return of Derelict Gods" is spotless. I don't need anything else. Excellent album, in my opinion. 
I have a very cool CD version here with me, as normally this album is unleashed by Old Temple Records, but I got a limited edition on digipak from Wings of Destruction, which contains two bonus tracks taken from 2007 demo “Black Pyramid”, which I never heard before – so, it is a very cool thing to have as a bonus. I am gonna play this album a lot, I tell you that. And I highly recommend it to you all. 
Standout tracks: “Rot No More”, “Black Mirror”
Verdict: 85/100