Tuesday, 7 May 2019

Tortorum - Katabasis

World Terror Committee is a label, which delivers many of my favourite black metal albums these days. And Tortorum is one of the best bands in their roster. It was formed among others by Paimona'ka Skoggen, who previously has been a leader of Thunderbolt - one of the best black metal bands from Poland. But he moved to Norway, played in Gorgoroth for a while and then finally created Tortorum with Barghest and Specter as his brothers in arms. "Extinctionist" album came out first in 2012, but I want to write few words about the second masterpiece, "Katabasis" from 2014. This album is absolutely brilliant and I can only speak positively about it. 
Musically it fits the WTC roster perfectly, so if you enjoy bands such as Chaos Invocation, Acrimonious or Ascension, Tortorum will be up your street as well. But that's not all. I don't know if that is only a matter of Necromorbus Studios production or what, but when listening to "Katabasis" you will feel a strong musical - but I suppose also conceptual - bond to bands such as OndskaptOfermodValkyrjaWatainand the old classics such as Dissection, Mayhem and Gorgoroth. But Tortorum is not a boring copy of these acts, but rather project, which shares a lot of alike ideas for black metal style with those I mentioned. This black metal is utterly vicious, obscure and malicious, with harsh, aggressive, razor sharp riffage, mostly blasting drums and sometimes quite chaotic feel. But these aspects are constantly and perfectly balanced with harmonies, which are a base for every song. They do not dominate here, sometimes are slightly hidden behind the wall of noisy, uncompromising black metal, but come up stronger just at the right time. The real apogee and at the same time a fantastic highlight of the album comes with the final anthem "Beyond the Earth and Air and Sun". Oh, it is simply superb song. I guess, you could say that in one way or another it's Tortorum's "Waters of Ain", allowing even more melodic parts, especially in that fantastic guitar solo to appear, sometimes creating almost a sorrowful feel. Of course, I don't have to mention that it correspondents very well with the entire atmosphere of the album and screaming vocals of Barghest, which are sometimes supported by clean singing hidden a little behind. 
Generally, there's a lot going on in every song. It's full of rhythm changes, variety of different kind of riffage, great, perfectly executed drumming, etc. So, with over 50 minutes of music, Tortorum doesn't allow you to get bored. The sound is powerful, the atmosphere is very ritualistic... Every time I listen to this album I do so with a huge pleasure and interest, picking up new details almost every time. "Katabasis" comes in a fantastic double vinyl set, housed in a gatefold sleeve with huge booklet, which looks absolutely amazing, speaking of the graphics, layout, etc. The only real fuck up are the pixels on the front cover. That looks pretty awful, to be honest. Anyway, this is absolutely a must to have album, in my opinion. Vinyl or CD, get a copy asap. Oh, one more thing – not sure if CD has it also, but vinyl is finished with Bathory’s “Call from the Grave” cover, an absolute crusher! 
Standout tracks: "Beyond the Earth and Air and Sun", "In Nameless Nonbeing", "As the Light Falls to Slaughter" 
Verdict: 85/100 

No comments:

Post a Comment