PROFANAL - Black Chaos (IRON TYRANT - CD 2012)
When the wave of old styled death metal has fired off a couple of years ago the Swedish sound and style has especially been resurrected in great way and together with bands like Entrails, Maim or Puteraeon it also turned out that you don’t necessarily have to be Swedish to have the sound and play the Swedish metal of death; just check out such fantastic (un)Swedish bands like Graveyard (Spain), Undead Creep (Italy), The Dead Goats (Poland) or Brutally Deceased (Czech Republic). Another fine name, which I have to add to this list, is Profanal from Tuscany, Italia. Unfortunately I have never had a chance to listen to their “Rotten Bodies” demo, but I do have a couple of their split 7”EPs in my collection – “Two Morbid Ways to Die” split with Funeral Whore (where they’ve covered Nirvana 2002’s “Mourning” in very excellent way!) and “United in Death” split with Obscure Infinity. These two recordings were enough to convince me that this is yet another really cool band, which started to play this sort of music and despite being completely unoriginal in their sound and style, they did manage to crush me with some of their songs. So, I have really been waiting for the time, when Profanal will get the debut full length CD/LP ready, especially as both bands they shared the EPs have already released albums – Funeral Whore did that great slab called “Step into Damnation” and Obscure Infinity already have two full length CDs. Finally the time came also for Profanal and “Black Chaos” has been unleashed by Iron Tyrant in November 2012.
When I listen to “Black Chaos” I obviously think of some of the old, cult albums such as “Left Hand Path” or “Indecent & Obscene”, as Profanal performs similar kind of obscure, raw and straight forward, relentless death metal, without much focus on the melodic side of this style. And this is why I mentioned these two albums. First thing, which you probably may notice is that great, very Sunlight-like production of “Black Chaos” – I really admire how bands like Profanal managed to get the guitar tone so close to the original, fat and punky Swedish sound… and I don’t know if that Boss HM2 pedal has been used or something similar, but really Profanal have killer sound on their debut album. It is deliberately rough and obscure, but so powerful, so energetic that it makes the songs sound even better than they are. And please don’t give me this shit like “it’s only an imitation, a bare copy of the old sound, etc ble ble bleeerghhh”, because I don’t care about it as long as the music is fine and trust me or not, but Profanal is fuckin awesome band. Another great thing about Profanal is the performance of their vocalist, Rosy. I mean this woman really nailed some fantastic vocal parts on the album, you won’t ever guess it is a female growler in the band, so harsh and vicious she sounds. It’s nothing like those lame vocals from Angela Gessow or whatever, but really brutal, old school vokills, just like Sharon Bascovsky’s. I am really impressed!
What I really like about “Black Chaos” is that it concentrates more on the straight forward, mid paced or fast, obscure Swedish death metal or from the another hand there are just few also slower, doomier parts, in the vein of… Autopsy, who else? That real, melodic accent of the Swedish death metal appears mainly in the final song, which is a killer instrumental titled “The Bright Light of Death” – it definitely is one of the highlights of the whole album, I like it a lot, even if it hasn’t got the vocals, but the riffs and those harmonies in it are just amazingly good and very memorable. But the whole album is filled with great, powerful riffing and good compositions. You’ll get smashed by the constant D-beat, persistent punching and horrid, obscure atmosphere… and fuck, I can honestly say that there’s absolutely nothing wrong about this band and this album. When I listen to such tracks as that mentioned instrumental motherfucker, as well as “Walls of Agony” (intense and cruel, great opener!), “Conquering Cemeteries”, “Worship the Skull” (great song, especially that slow, doomy part!)… really there isn’t a bad song on the album and that is great thing. Recommended!
Standout tracks: “The Bright Light of Death”, “Conquering Cemeteries”, “Walls of Agony”, “Worship the Skull”
Final rate: 83/100