Honestly I’ve forgotten which number, and/or which exact installment I’m on so what better way to continue than to not. Huh-!?
Exactly. Suffice to say I’ll keep this simple. A new title and with each entry I’ll include a date (so it’s author can better keep track of the entries).
Alright, let’s start things off with a collection of albums whose titles and tracks within I can’t understand a word of, netherless they still serve to intrigue the crap outta me and expand upon my appreciation of all that emcompasses metal (wherever it may originate).
Savage Annihilation – Quand s’abbaise la Croix du Blasphe’me (France)
Release – October/12/2017
500 hand numbered digipak CD, 300 limited edition 12″ LP
MVD Entertainment, Season of Mist and Xenokorp (depending on the location)
Those familiar with my musings on audio have an understanding that I’ll listen to whatever, from wherever, (with vocals) in any language so long as the whole package pleases my senses. This releases (I won’t attempt to spell it again lest my spell checker goes on strike) lyrics are entirely composed in French but that doesn’t distract at all from its overall effectiveness.
The first track tosses the listener back a few decades to an audio scape introduced to the unsuspecting masses via the maniacal musical textures found within the earliest of Morbid Angel releases. Savage aren’t, however, clones. Their style differs throughout the album though still manages to hold firm to the chaotic, diabolical, style that fans of the aforementioned will greedily devour. Drums play a huge part, the ‘Commando’ Sandoval complexity theme works outstandingly well here too (this time courtesy of Mickhael ‘Mike Savage’ Chaigne, half of the brother team comprising two thirds of the band) complementing the versatile guitar attack. Brother #2, ‘Dave Savage’, is responsible for both lead guitar and vocals an especially tricky task, that he handles amazingly well, given the constantly changing direction and vibe of the music itself.
Track structures are exciting, thankfully miles from predictable and contain anything but formulaic chuggery. The style constantly nudges against grindcore boundaries only careening away to do the same teasing act with the technical side of the death spectrum. Topping the album off is the fact that four of the six tracks on display boast epic dimensions, lengths comprised, much like the remainder of the album, of seamless fluidity encased in barbaric brutality without once sacrificing melody or intrigue.
This album only gets better the more familiar the listener becomes with its many intricacies. Needless to say yhis lives up exceedingly well to repeated listens, as if the first wasn’t enough to drag you into under its wicked spell.
Very highly recommended.
I’m determined to keep this trend going…
Cries – Psic’opata (Chile)
Release – November/15/2017
CD – limited to 100 copies Unsigned/Independent
I seem to be on roll (Ham and Havarte please) with locating International releases lacking lyrics in a dialect I have more than trouble deciphering, Psic’opata is no exception. Cries, known previously as Cries of Death, hail from Chile thry’ve been active since 2008 with an EP, a full length and a pair of singles to their credit. Psicopata has lyrical content depicting ten real life Chilean crimes warranting further research for all those interested in such things.
Lumped with the moniker ‘Groove’ metal the album doesn’t disappoint (spoiler alert!!) either those embroiled on the death core fold or those with a penchant for death metal, in fact I’ll go so as far as to say that Cries, in certain instances, sound very similar to Black Dahlia Murder (even including the twin-pronged vocal style attack) which, depending on your preferences, isn’t horrid in the slightest.
The album starts on great footing with the the neck snapping potential of Soy Su Peor Pesadilla grabbing the listeners attention and limbs with its punishing driving riffs and brutal approach for the wild ride that’s about to commence.
Macabros Hallazgos takes the album into choppier territories with its stylistic death core -esque leanings, not usually a fan of the genre I was strangely drawn towards its allure and Rodrigo Perez’ vocal style and range. I’ll admit the fact that the lyrics are foreign for some reason only increases my interest all the more.
Siniestra (midway through) is another standout track, it displays an initial ‘cresting wave’ djent feel that transforms into an array of technical riffage bordering on grindcore, which again switches back (and forth) to make for an intriguing change in the style of the album to keep the listener on their toes.
Endemoniado, the albums final track, veers wildly into the black metal arena with its intro, atmosphere and rhythm (giving the album a diverse genre label as it does so) a fantastic finale to an album that grows on the listener with every repeated spin.
I honestly can’t fathom why Cries remain unsigned Psic’opata is a fantastic example of an album and act who isn’t afraid to dip into diverse realms while incorporating their own style. Mesmerizing throughout this is a release which deserves respect and warrants attention. The album can be found on Spotify. Feel free to show your appreciation by contacting the band on Facebook (criesoficial)
Varg – Das Ende aller Lugen (Germany)
Release – January /15/2016
Obviously I’m a tad late to this ‘party’, the album in question was released over two years ago now. However, based on viewing the albums emotionally powerful montage imagery laden introductory video – Das Ende aller Lugen (extended version) I couldn’t pass up inserting a few thoughts on the overall release in this piece. It seems appropriate really on account of the ‘flavor’ prevalent throughout this article.
DEaL (abbreviations can be so much fun!) commences on a powerful note, especially if like me you are privy to viewing the video mentioned above (depicting the horrific nature of man, the allure of all consuming power at a price and the lust for world domination). Following the ‘atmosphere’ provided by the albums introduction the style transforms into more of a driving melodic death riff laden format that’s highly pleasing to the ears. The style is reminiscent of Amon Amarth yet belies a ‘harder’ edge on account of the harsher vocal style, which may or may not be due to the heavily pronounced accent.
As the album plays out a handful of styles are explored, including but not limited to a Ramstein-esque vibe included in the highly infectious Achtung (search for the official video – you can thank me later!). Other tracks include a further exploration of genres, a dip into atmospheric realms adds depth while experimentation with the utilization of an additional vocalist in Totentanz works well to break up both the tracks feel and adds diversity to the overall flavor of the album itself.
Wintersturm is among my favorite tracks on the album and provides both melody and rhythm passages to please those with a yearning for audio that incites movement intersected with brief moments in which to hold the lighter aloft (wait wha-!?).
In conclusion, if you appreciate melodic metal with an angle, in this case Viking themed with a flair for social justice (that isn’t at all overpowering), that displays intricacy with rhythms which are miles from mere chuggery you’ll enjoy this. Each track stands apart from its neighbors to provide excitement and a listening experience that’s anything but predictable.
Funfact: DEaL, in some formats, is also packaged with an additional English language version for those who prefer. Personally I appreciate the texture the original language provides.
Sol de Sangre -s/t (Australia/Canada and the USA)
Release – March/23/2018
Black Market Metal
Comprised of musicians originally born in Columbia (but currently living elsewhere) Sol de Sangre is designed as a tribute to the death scene of the 90’s with special attention given to influence from Morbid Angel, Terrorizer, Death, Entombed, Napalm Death and early Sepultura (especially heard in the instrumental Purgatorio). In regards to the album itself the lyrics are entirely in Spanish (can you see the trend in this piece yet?) and the music, well let’s just say you don’t have to know one word of the language to let it toss you to a landscape of absolute audio bliss. With each track, no two sound similar, the style subtly changes. Various influences are pungent while others are more akin to a barely discernable sprinkle of spice. Styles range from the legendary Gothenburg vibe (ala Entimbed/Dismember/Grave) to an occasional Godflesh Industrial/death feel all the way through the breakneck pacing of the death/thrash arena (Vomitory/Jungle Rot) with few atmospheric doom, punk and grindcore passages (Napalm Death/Bolt Thrower) tossed in for good measure. But let’s not forget the accoustic South American flaminco, close I’m sure..!?, touches that break up the album perfectly while leaving no doubt in the listeners mind where this originates.
Thankfully, this concoction remains highly infectious throughout displaying the unmistakable stellar talents, creativity and dedication to the craft of all those involved. Also attached are the mixing talents of Tomas Skogsberg (famous for his associations with Entombed, Disnember and Grave) and the mastering touch of Joel Grind (Toxic Holocaust).
All in all this is a release any serious fan of the genre will want to snatch up. With that being said however, this could well be the perfect jumping on point for any fledging fan to fully submerge their senses in the genre, but it should be labeled with a neon warning…(worded a damn site better than I can conjure, no doubt) listening to this will incite a lifetime of addiction to the metal arts.
An outstanding slab of metal.
Your slave to extreme audio, no matter it’s origins,
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