Friday, 8 November 2013

Archives of the Dead part XI: Arioch – Disciples of Darkness (demo 1993)

Archives of the Dead part XI: Arioch – Disciples of Darkness (demo 1993)
Line up: Mike Gay (bass), Michael Seabrook (vocals, guitars), M. Hirzel (session drums)
Recorded at Laud Productions Lansing, Michigan, May 1993. Mixed & engineered by Tim Lau & Arioch.
Another completely unknown band, which I would like to write about, is Arioch. They were from Jackson, Michigan, USA, and this duo – featuring Mick Gay (hmm… yeah, I know!) on bass and Michael Seabrook on guitars / vocals – did only one demo, “Disciples of Darkness” in 1993… My knowledge about Arioch is limited to what I can find on Metal Archives, so it is very, very small (would be awesome if someone out there knew something more about the band and shared his knowledge with me!), but Arioch never has been much known and “Disciples of Darkness” was their only demo, so I doubt that many of you have ever heard of them also. Luckily someone recently has rescued it from being totally forgotten and provided a download link – this is how I found out about the existence of Arioch and got to know their music. Cool, because I can add yet another name to the list of forgotten death metal jewels.
OK, if I can be honest then I must admit that “Disciples of Darkness” was nothing really outstanding and generally it was very mediocre 90’s death metal demo. Arioch didn’t have anything unique and truly killer in their sound; didn’t have that spark and you know… they were just one of many death metal bands back those days. Even when speaking of the less known US death metal bands – such as Morgue, Banished, Gutted, Arius or Canadian Purulence – Arioch wasn’t as good and memorable as them. But somehow though “Disciples of Darkness” has its charm and even despite being unoriginal and mediocre, I still enjoy this demo. You know, I can always find something special in such old demos… Besides, don’t get me wrong - this stuff is not utterly bad, but it’s just decent, but unoriginal death metal with nice dark aura and evil feeling (oh, those intros!). Some of these riffs are really cool, but maybe some songs are slightly too long and this is why they sometimes become monotonous? Or maybe that’s just the fault of the production? Generally I miss here some truly powerful and energetic playing, not necessarily fast blast beats or whatever (the whole music is mainly mid paced, speaking of the tempos), but just this crushing, violent feeling of death metal, which should be there and which here on “Disciples of Darkness” is somehow absent. So, if this demo had a little bit more powerful production, would it make a stronger impact? Probably yes, because as I mentioned some of these riffs are really good and so are the vocals and the songs in general. Anyway, Arioch probably never recorded anything after “Disciples of Darkness” and just perished. Now this demo is the only sign of their existence… It’s always cool to check out and listen to some unknown bands and their old demos… the same is here. It may not be anything spectacular, but it is OK and I can sincerely listen to “Disciples of Darkness” once in a while.
Final rate: 66/100

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