Written by: MetalFederation (Alex)
For an album review writer moving up in the world from Instagram captions, what could be better than the debut LP from a newly formed band? I, Alex (@metalfederation on Instagram), and death metal crew Crypta are here for a mutual debut! The four-piece international group from Brazil and the Netherlands delivered Echoes of the Soul on June 11th via Napalm Records. Boasting a supergroup lineup of big names, Crypta aim to make a strong first impression with a tracklist of pummeling death metal that clocks in at just 42 minutes. Will they silence any irrelevant debates about what the perfect run time for an album is? I’m as excited as you are to find out.
(But if you’re wondering, 42 minutes is pretty close to perfect and I apologize to the consequently offended prog nerds.)
Written by: The Administrator
Typically, familiarity with a musician's past work will flavor an audience's reception to said musicians new endeavor. However, due to a certain inability on my part to absorb press kits details prior to imbibing, I listened to this absolute beast of an EP many, many times before realizing that the roster is chock full o' recognizable extreme metal talent. Featuring current and former members of *checks notes* Possessed, Abbath, Decrepit Birth, The Kennedy Veil, Black Crown Initiate, and Angerot, this quartet of blackened death thrashers evidently know their way around the ol' block.
It shows. Glossolalia is a riveting three-track, and, needless to say, a very strong first outing. It is explosive, tastefully frenetic, and varied enough to avoid being pigeonholed according to the tenets of their prior work. Let's dive in, shall we?
Written by: Blackie Skulless
Coming from the cooler lands of Minnesota is a fresh project of thrash and death proportions known as Begravement. Considering how young these kids are, they definitely have an ear for abrasive fronts and classic tactics, managing to get out a demo-quality EP early this year known, in turn, as Conjuring The Necromancer. Notably, there’re also some slight hints at progressive-leaning writing.
With all of that in mind, it is obviously pretty rookie. This is nearly a half hour of extremely unhinged layering at depths that are sometimes difficult to measure. By that I mean it’s a bit uneven in spots between bass and lead/rhythm precedence. On the bright side, the hooks are plenty sharp, such as the simpler rhythms in the title track, as well as its bridge. “Opaque Malevolence” is also a more straightforward one that was stronger in this regard, emulating thrashy passages that make up the better parts of this disc.
Written by: Lord Hsrah
Torture, pain, cannibalism, gore, evisceration, murderous psychopaths are all entities done, brushed, bruised and dusted in death metal and all its various derivative forms over the years. But Pune, India based trio Dead Exaltation bring forth their debut album, Despondent, in progressive/technical death metal flavors, and with it an interesting story of innocent civilians picked off the streets straight into prison, for no rhyme or reason (well, that's a rhyme), left at the mercy of a psychopathic jail warden and his sadistic, cannibal guards who show them what it feels like being hell's very own citizens living in God's created world.
Dead Exaltation took birth in 2015 as a five-piece band, but flowing in the daily course of the river of life, bassist Anish Poulose and second guitarist Sourjya Mukherjee separated as tributaries, leaving vocalist Satyajit Gargori, guitarist Mradul Singhal (who also recorded the bass, now deceased, R.I.P), and drummer Aditya Oke to record this since-long composed concept album.
Written by: The Voiceless Apparitio
Where do I even begin? Only in 2020--one of the most trying times in human history--would Mr. Bungle come back to release "new" music. Granted, it's a re-recording of their first demo, but still, it's freshly recorded material from them. I, of course, am beyond stoked to see this happen. I'm a strong admirer of Mr. Bungle, and, for that matter, most of Mike Patton's projects. This album features the original trio of Mike Patton, Trey Spruance, and Trevor Dunn, and this time they are joined by Scott Ian from Anthrax on rhythm guitars and Dave Lombardo, formerly of Slayer, Fantomas, and various other bands on drums. A stellar lineup of musicians.
So now it's time: The Easter Bunny is pissed off and out for blood. Can you survive its WRATH?
Written by: The Voiceless Apparition
Hello dear friends! It's sad to say but our time with this retrospective series has come to an end, for we are ending with Whiteworm Cathedral. (If you missed the first, second, third, fourth, and fifth review in the series, be sure to check 'em out! - Ed).
This album marks another integral moment in Necrophagia's career. After a few delays and having to re-record the whole thing, we were gifted this beautiful album. There is no huge lineup change this time. Boris Randall would end up leaving and was replaced by guitarists Scrimm and Abigail Lee Nero, and Killjoy is also reunited with former keyboardist Mirai Kawashima. Both guitarists are an absolutely stellar addition to Necrophagia, as you will soon read below. So, without further ado I will now leave you with Whiteworm Cathedral...
Written by: Blackie Skulless
Earlier this year, I touched on Thirsty Demon’s debut demo from 2019 titled Waning Death, which was a pretty exceptional taste of death/thrash that fits the Chilean scene. This year, they’ve brought forth a full-length record, something I’ve been anticipating for a bit. Titled Unconscious Suicide, this one mostly does away with the thrash influences and focuses on death metal crisp.
To go along with that, the songwriting itself is tightened up regarding clarity in guitar leads, and overall it’s less chaotic in delivery. Pretty normal moving from the demo stage, but all three of the main tracks from the demo made it here (hold the interlude track). “Sadistic Desire,” “Waning Death,” and “With Them You Will Rot” blend in very well, and the grueling touch to the vocals and a different production significantly boost this. If there are any real signs of the thrash roots showing, they’re gonna peak out here.
Written by: Blackie Skulless
Nothing like a good ol’ slice of death metal from an area not far from me. Spesimin are an upcoming act out of Philadelphia, PA, and their debut EP Born In The Crypt is an instant burst of in-your-face discomfort. With only thirteen minutes of runtime, they certainly gauge a healthy idea of what they’re all about, as they waste zero time opening on such a harsh kick.
Composition wise, Spesimin injects a surprising amount of thrashier elements. It’s quite riff oriented in that sense, boasting plenty of bounce and energetic life under a harsher mix. This allows for a solid balance between melody and chaos--the former being lesser in quantity. Most of this comes from a crustier, punk-like push that can be heard especially in “Violent Sanctification.” It’s your perfect moshpit banger with plenty of sharp leads breaking the buzzing rhythmic surface.
Written by: Beaston Lane
Frigid rain falls through the canopy of a Scandinavian forest as the clearing fog reveals two opposing armies, each with unbreakable faith after paying tribute to their gods. A natural ambiance thicker than fortress walls separates the warriors as they each anticipate their leader’s call to charge. What I’m describing isn’t necessarily the beginning of a medieval battle, rather the vivid atmosphere that introduces Vampire’s mighty third record, Rex. This feeling of anticipation builds during the interlude entitled “Prelusion,” and at its sudden conclusion, the armies charge as the carnage of Rex is unleashed upon us all.
Rooted in mythology, Rex is a hellish journey through chaos and serenity. Juxtaposing high-octane thrashers and sneering mid-tempo odysseys, the album showcases the band’s versatility and highlights the demonic vocals of Hand of Doom, the lead vocalist. Existing at the intersection of classic thrash metal, melodic death metal, and modern black metal, Vampire is a three-headed monster which utilizes these influences to create an engrossing and unique listening experience. While not every song can boast of being truly memorable, Rex is a bold statement from a young band destined to continue their ascension through the metal ranks.
Written by: Blackie Skulless
I can almost always count on Blood Harvest to deliver some of the nastiest, filthiest, and most unlovable music that’s ever been unearthed. Nekus are a German act that cooks up horrific soundscapes that fit this description perfectly. Their debut album Death Nova Upon The Barren Harvest casts some striking imagery based from the black and death metal voids. The dirtiness of the former crossed with the filthiness of the latter is why this takes such monstrous form.
There are only four tracks, none being overly long besides the ten-minute closer “Dagger Of The Corrupter,” so it’s actually a fairly swift listen. But truthfully, it all feels like one massive song. The common core of droning riffs that feel like a constant swarm of hornets clouding up small hints of comprehensive rhythm saturates every track with ungodly amounts of weight. If it weren’t for the rather steady drum patterns, you’d have a hard time finding the direction of where things are headed.
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and loud enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry!