Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Solstice(US) - Solstice

Solstice

Full-length, Steamhammer
1992

In the genre of Old School Death/Thrash, ever since it's inception in the 80's, the most notoriously famous bands have delivered some promising music which have influenced scores of musicians and bands alike to continue the tradition and keep the flame burning and also fuel it into an inferno of sorts. Florida based four-piece entity Solstice did the same when they released their first full-length self-titled album in 1992. Album opener 'Transmogrified' starts off with a vicious attack and sets the ball rolling for the listener to soak up the madness to follow for the rest of the album. Guitarist/Vocalist Rob Barrett brings in a unique style of vocals employing brutal shouting along with handling lead guitars very well with some sick tremolo picking. Rhythm Guitarist Dennis Munoz joins in with his adroitly executed guitar interplay with solos that have a great 80's Metal vibe to them. The sharp, precise and well-written riffs are sure to linger in one's head for a long time. Bassist Mark Van Erp does his job well with the low-end duties to add some more meat on the bones and stays right on cue. Drummer Alex Marquez propels the intensity to higher levels with his highly intense, machine-gun fast staccato drumming. With copious amounts of double-bass and a few hard-hitting blastbeats thrown in for good measure, the entire listening experience becomes every air drummers' wet dream.

All songs have been written by Rob Barrett and Alex Marquez. The lyrics deal with Death, Suffering, Aberration and are similar in outburst to many other releases by bands of that era. A cover of Crossover Thrash band Carnivore's "S.M.D" includes backing vocals by James Murphy, Scott Burns and Tony Teegarden(ex-Cynic). James Murphy also lends his guitar talents on solos on the tracks "Cleansed of Impurity" and "Survival Reaction". The album's production is excellent owing to the expertise of the masterful Scott Burns (Atheist, Cancer, Cannibal Corpse, Obituary etc). All in all, A fantastic album and highly recommended to fans of Old School Death/Thrash who've missed out on this!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Weapon (Can) - From the Devil's Tomb



Full Length, Ajna/Agonia
November Ist, 2010



2010 has been quite a spectacular year for metal so far, albeit it had a pretty quiet start. But it was just a hideous deception. Just like the calm before a ravaging storm!
During early November, I was scrounging forums and other internet sources for some of the best releases, the underground has seen this year and came across the latest Weapon album. For a moment, I was in a state of daze and the first words which came out of my mouth were - HOLY COW! A NEW WEAPON ALBUM! Whilst I was blown away by the new releases of Bloody Sign, Kerasphorus and Grave Miasma, a new offering by Weapon seemed far more enticing than those ones and I had to immediately pounce upon it. My love for this Canadian horde dates back to a recent time when I discovered their EP called as ''Para Bhakti...Salvation'' while digging up some Canadian congregations. That 2 track feature was astoundingly rapturous and I became an instant fan of their abominable executions.


Weapon's history dates back to 2003 when the mysterious Vetis Monarch formed the unholy ensemble to loathe divinity and build an empire of darkness and occult. The band was originally rooted in Calgary but now they are based in Edmonton. An interesting story is that their demo and the first 7'' were recorded in Bangladesh. The EP ''Violated Hejab'' also had Kapalyq from the relatively unknown (But incredible) Bangladeshi band Barzakh (Now Orator) on bass. As intriguing as it sounds, Weapon were nowhere behind weaving an aural web of destructive symphonies with their inceptive releases. The next release ''Para Bhakti... Salvation'', which had introduced me to this band, was the perfect advancement of the band's sound. You could sense the careful craftsmanship in the way these impious artisans drafted their desirable ritual ceremonies. What intrigued me more were the lyrical themes the band had employed. They focus towards satanism but also towards the occult and mysticism. Tracks like ''Archana'' and ''Para Bhakti...Salvation'' are staunch examples of the band's lyrical prowess where they have profoundly incorporated sanskrit verses to depict their faith towards devil worship.



Just a year after ''Para Bhakti'' had ruptured the Canadian/Worldwide underground, Weapon were ready with their first full length album which was entitled as ''Drakonian Paradigm''. This album was released by the Ajna Offensive which was a change from their previous label Full Moon Productions. Actually, they have had 3 different record labels for their first 3 releases but now they hopefully seem stable with Ajna who also released their 2nd full length feature. Drakonian Paradigm clearly unleashed the band's maturity as extremely skillfull musicians, who were profoundly adept in carving a niche in the Canadian bestial black/death legion.
The album featured 7 tracks, which ran through 40 minutes. This was a tad different in terms of production and this change must have been initated to support the more dense atmosphere the songs possess.
Tons of cryptic melodic leads and usage of nefarious chants on certain songs was clearly a top notch move by Weapon. It was an effort to make the sound more darkened and occult than the previous rituals and they nearly succeeded in achieveing this goal.



Now, just a year later, Weapon were ready with yet another full length. Yeah, quite a roll for them as there were 3 releases in subsequent years. I was extremely ecstatic about hearing the album and had my popcorns and nachos ready to await for one hell of a deathly ride. The moment when the first track ''From the Devil's Tomb'' emanated from the speakers, I started popping in the corns in my mouth in a trance like state and had to choke as a subsequent result. I hadn't even got a chance to revive fully, when I was shook with the riff frenzies and blastorocity the song offered next. The eloquent rhythmic carnage continued in such a suave manner that I lost myself completely into the beauty of this sonic frenzy. The elegantly nefarious tremolo picked riff orgies and leads had left me spellbound and I was ready to face the rest of this mayhem. 
The immediate ritual, named as ''Vested in Surplice and Violet Stole'' was increasingly emphatic with its stupendous riff laden destruction. I couldn't believe the amount of eargasmic ecstacy, these two opening tracks had already provided me but the next track made me ejaculate! Furor Divinus was its name and had a splendid chorus where Vetis apparently praised the name of Shiva, (as far as I could decipher) the lord of destruction. The amount of profoundity the album already possessed, left me overjoyed and zealous about the complete venture. Vortex 11724 continued the trademark melodic execution as employed in Bested in Surplice and Violet Stole and the beautiful acoustic interlude ''Left Hand Path Yoga'' acted as a soothing balm amidst the entire fury. 

''The Inner Wolf'' began in a war like demeanor with its opening riff and background chants. The entire track was a captivating combination of abrupt quick paced blast rhythms and mid paced sections. And I only had one word in my mind after each passing song - wow! But the album's grandeur had no boundaries and I got this feeling immediately after the next song ''Sardonyx'' began with an elegant Tabla intro. Those opening riffs blended absolutely majestically with the short yet powerful intro and then the commotion broke through. Riffs, riffs and more riffs - there seemed no end to those and there were still 2 more songs left! 
Trishul was the second last song on the album and it was followed by the concluding track - ''Towards the Uncreated''. Seconds after the song was unleashed to my auditory senses, I got a faint idea that this might be the best on the whole album! 
If I had addressed Weapon as skillfull artisans in my statements above, I had done nothing wrong because this last track exemplifies it by every means possible. They could not have have a better and more hypnotic end to an already spectacular album as it consisted some of the best moments, congregated together as one final ceremonial execution. 

Talk about satisfaction and ''From the Devils Tomb'' would provide you ample of it. Its the musical equivalent of a perfect sexual experience which would give you some of the best orgasms your ears could ever get. 

Enter the Weapon's horde NOW!
http://www.weaponchakra.com/
http://www.myspace.com/theweaponchakra


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Gig Review - Immolation North American Tour with Vader, Pathology, Abigail Williams and Lecherous Nocturne




First of all, I have to apologize for delaying this gig review for so long. But exams have meant a shortage of time to dedicate to anything other than education. But anyway, I had to write about this gig, which in my time as a metalhead, has been the best show I have ever attended.

First, I ll start off with an introduction. I moved to San Diego, California from India in august for further education. In june, I got to know of the North American tour headlined by Immolation. A further look at the rest of the lineup had me yelling out in joy. 5 great bands, all under one roof. Fairly well known bands such as Pathology, Abigail Williams and Lecherous Nocturne sharing stage with two legends – Vader and Immolation. I started listening to death metal because of Vader. So, I think its fair to say, I hold that band in the highest possible regard. Immolation are a band that have influenced me a great deal. They are more than just music for me. They have influenced and shaped my thoughts greatly and are quite possibly my favorite band in this form of music. It was a dream of mine to watch Immolation live one day, and I was finally getting my wish.

October 16th was the day I was waiting for. It seemed as if every day from june was excruciatingly long. Saving cash for the gig and merch was my utmost priority and I had to sacrifice going to a Brujeria show on October 13th to save money for this. Finally, the day arrived. I could not sleep at night. The gig was supposed to start by 6:30 or so, but I went off early and was there at the venue by 5. I wanted to buy a pass for the show and just wanted to go early hoping to catch the members from either of the bands. And yes. My perseverance was rewarded and I got to talk to both my idols, Ross Dolan and Bob Vigna of Immolation. I wont talk more about that here, because I could easily fill up 5 pages with it. But I have to say, it has been the best moment of the 22 years of my existence so far. Bought a t-shirt too. Saw a 'Close To the World Below' tee and jumped at it.

The show started with a local band, 'Beheading the king'. A death metal band from San Diego. They were very good. Played a 25 minute set and warmed the crowd up well. They were followed by Aenea, another local melodic death metal band from San Diego. They were releasing anew EP and played all the tracks of it. And I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by them. Not being the greatest fan of this genre, I approached it with skepticism, but the band were very tight. I was not very impressed by the vocals, but every other aspect of the band was very impressive. Definitely a band to look forward to. Then came the big guns. Pathology backed out because they had some problems with their guitarist. The details are up on their myspace. That was disappointing. I love that band and they were one of the bands I was looking forward to. Anyway, Lecherous Nocturne were up next; and did they deliver. Most of the people in the crowd did not know that band, but they came and ripped the crowd apart. Good stage presence and they were exceedingly brutal. After one of their songs, the person standing next to me was completely stunned and yelled out - “Man ! These mother fuckers are brutal.” Could not sum it up any better.

Abigail Williams were up next. I never liked this band. I hated their earlier 'symphonic deathcore' crap. But I did hear that they changed their style in their new release and have abandoned their deathcore roots, shifting to a proper black metal approach. I decided to give them another chance, and a good thing I did. You could feel the temperature in the venue drop by a few degrees when they played their first song. This, for me, was a good sign because it means the band is doing its job well. They played some Good atmospheric black metal. I liked their performance a lot. The first couple of songs were very good. But the third one was not of the standards of the previous ones. But again, it was an enjoyable performance. I did not like their full length release too much, but I ll give it another listen. If anything, their performance merited it.

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Now was finally the time. The time for Vader. I couldn’t believe I was actually watching one of my idols play live before my very eyes. The band came out for a couple of minutes to complete the final soundcheck and it sent goosebumps down my spine. Suddenly the moment arrived. A keyboard ambient intro blaring from the speakers and up came the band. I have to say, I have never seen a performance so brutal in all these years. They were amazing. An onslaught that could just be felt to be believed. Within minutes, there was mayhem in the moshpit. The pit was full of beer and more alcohol with people moshing and slipping on it. A couple of fights broke out, but nothing too big. The played for 30 minutes or so and left the stage, only to come back again when we called them out for an encore, And duly proceeded to play, 'This Is the War'. This being one of my favorite Vader tracks, was a fitting finale to their amazing performance.

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When Vader's performance ended, I remember thinking that nothing could top this. I couldn’t imagine anything would blow me away like a steamroller to the extent of what Vader just did. But, I was wrong. When immolation performed their final soundcheck, I could feel a chill running down down my spine again. This was the moment I had been waiting for 7 years or so. The band I had been waiting to see for so long were finally here. All of a sudden, the lights dimmed off and in front of us were Immolation. They started off with 'The Purge' from their newest release, 'Majesty and Decay.' The setlist was better than what I had imagined. They had tracks from most of their releases. Highlights being 'Close To a World Below' and 'father, You are Not a Father.' Immolation were intense. The true definition of the word. They sounded evil. More evil than what I had ever experienced from any other band. You could feel the 'Anti-God' sentiment showing through when they played their songs. Singing the lyrics to Father, You are Not a Father was one of the most intense experiences of my life. Again, I am not throwing the word around lightly, but you could feel the need to end all religion and slay a god if he ever existed. I could feel a host of images churning through my head and a feeling of complete evil. This, was the most powerful I have ever felt. And I have to say, it was a wonderful change.

Anyway, I probably dragged this on for too long, but I can still write a page more. This was a perfect gig and to be honest, I don't think any other band will even come close to topping this. I will be watching Nile and Watain in november and I really don't think they can beat this. But one thing's for sure, I wont ever forget this.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Hail of Bullets - On Divine Winds (2010)



Full Length, Metal Blade Records
2010

Its been around half a century since the cacophonies of the World Wars tormented the earth but those horrific memories can't be ever ceased from the planet. The ones who witnessed those, can hardly ever get over the gruesome nightmares which haunt them every night. The slightest feeling of the carnage which  had raced around the world like wild fire, gives an excruciating feeling of despair and grief. 

The modern day man relived those blacekend memories via the various documentaries, movies and other features made on the wars. Many of them actually resurrected the vile scenarios of the war and personified the doom-stricken chaos lands, quite suavely. 
But history was about to repeat itself in 2006, when 5 men from Holland geared up their armors and artilleries and marched ahead to de-construct brutal ballads of war. They aptly named this congregation as ''Hail of Bullets'', with the solemn aim of portraying the scenes of WWII with their musical spectrum. This bandwagon comprises of many veteran death metal stalwarts who have been highly influential for the genre since many years now. Headed by the charismatic Martin Van Dru
nen (Asphyx, Pestilence, Comecon etc.), they also have Paul, Stephen and Theo from the legendary Thanatos on guitars and bass, respectively. The battery is being manned by Ed Warby of Gorefest fame. Quite a line-up, isn't it? And they don't disappoint in any manner.


Their first release was a self titled demo in 2007 but the stellar highlight was the spectacular ''...Of Frost and War'', released in 2008 which was a masterpiece war themed death metal album. The trademark vocal assaults of Martin and an extremely heavy and crunchy guitar attack made the album an intensely gratifying sonic treat. 2009 was trembled by yet another release called as '' Warsaw Rising''. It was a 6 track EP, featuring a few live songs and a Twisted Sister Cover. 
Enter 2010 and the band unleashed their 4th offering entitled as ''On Divine Winds'', released by Metal Blade Records. This second full length album by Hail of Bullets is yet another militaristic death metal onslaught and it has helped in establishing the band's trademark sound. Lasting around 48 minutes, this venture boasts of 11 well composed and atmospherically adept tracks which keeps the listener driven towards the edge of insanity. 

Kicking off with the symphonic war hymn ''The Eve of Battle'', this mini World War package continues to ravage ahead with bestial tracks like ''Operation  Z'', ''The Mukden Incident'' and the thrashy ''Strategy of Attrition''. On the other side we have some really nicely carved mid paced tracks like ''On Choral Shores'' and the fantastic ''Tokyo Napalm Holocaust''. 
The straight edged guitar attack comprises all the formulas of a perfectly headbangable old school record. But it doesn't really contain the panache and razor sharp, catchy mood of ...Of Frost and War. The drums aren't too heavier and ball-sy like the first full length but overall it doesn't hamper the record for being a great and enjoyable one. The production values are pretty neat and would cater to the needs of the newer era death metal fans too. 

I would sum ''On Divine Winds'' as a conceptual album like its pre-decessor but this was a somewhat different approach than the first album. Its a mixture of mid paced, thrashier and some groovy double bass sections which are enough for a fan of true death metal to enjoy it. What is more important is that we have an ensemble which is able to portray the ravishing atrocities and scenarios of the ghastly World War II with a great musical edge. Fans of War themes and death metal have a reason to cherish since they can enjoy both the entities in a delirious mixture, all thanks to Hail of Bullets!

Check out the band here - 

Final Rating - 7.8/10

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Gig Attack - Brute Fest 17/10/10 Kyra Theatre, Bangalore, India

Brute Fest, a Metal gig featuring some of the city's best Extreme Bands among others, saw Dark Desolation, Anorectal Ulceration, Gorified and Abandoned Agony play some amazing musick to an enthusiastic bunch of Metalheads on Sunday the 17th October, 2010. Here's the lowdown -

Dark Desolation, a relatively new band, brought out their brand of Black Metal to a curious crowd, many of whom had not heard of or seen the band before. They were tight and all the band members essayed their parts effortlessly. The vocalist seemed to have most of the audiences' attention with his slightly raspy and rather unique vocal style.

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One evident aspect of Dark Desolation's music were the subtle elements of Death Metal in their music. Pounding blastbeats along with a thick-as-honey rhythm section, growling vocals and guitar solos were well interspersed with the already flowing Black Metal. The band even went on to cover Napalm Death's 'You Suffer' much to the audience's surprise. A solid performance with a setlist dominated by original compositions. A band to watch out for.

Anorectal Ulceration, the Goregrind enity took to the stage after more than a year and still put up a good show for the Grind freaks to enjoy. A relatively short setlist comprising of some hard-hitting originals and covers of Gut and Rompeprop thrown in got many heads banging and a couple of moshpits as well!

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A superb guitar tone and crazy riffs , complementing basslines and maniacal blastbeats seemed to captivate every Extreme fan in the audience. Vocalist Charlie brought in some extra noise to the already filthy sonic attack in the form of toilet flush vocals, which made Anorectal's show even more intense and enjoyable. A great performance overall!

Grindgore sickos Gorified took to the stage amidst some loud cheering and being the seasoned grinders they are, took off to an explosive start and continued the cranium-hammering assault till the very end of their act. Being a two-piece band hasn't deterred them in delivering a strong show everytime and the experience gained over the years has simply given them an edge.

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An aggressive guitar attack with a murderous tone coupled with some sickass guttural growls and an insanely heavy drumtrack got the audience into a frenzy, ensuring many heads banged and initiating moshpits. An all-original setlist and marvellous execution. These guys can probably never deliver a bad show. Definitely, a force to be reckoned with. Flesh Ripping Sonic Torment anyone?

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Brutal Death Metallers Abandoned Agony were the last band to play for the day and despite that, played flawlessly with the same ferocity they always display. The inclusion of technical elements into their music has seemingly earned them more fans and attention. Well-structured originals with a razor-sharp attack left the Metalheads asking for more. The Jaw-breaking drumming, precise riffs and beastly growls all made up for one hell of an aural concoction!

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With a badass cover of Cannibal Corpse's 'Skull Full of Maggots' and some of their newer songs, the band ended their set amidst loud applause!

Until the next Gig Attack!

Maniac Butcher - Masakr (2010)



Full Length, Negative Existence
2010

It's been quite some time since a review has surfaced from me. I decided for this one to do it completely left field and cover one of my favorite black metal bands of all time, Maniac Butcher. In the swirl of past bands reuniting and putting out new records as of late, the return of the Czech legends Maniac Butcher was swept under the rug. Perhaps if this album would've came out a few years ago it would be received differently as I feel it wasn't great timing. Oddly enough, I happened to find news of this CD just doing a random search online for one of their discs. Their last record was Epitaph released almost 10 years ago. Indeed! 10 years and Maniac Butcher has released the ultra furious and heavy "Masakr" to show the younger bands how black metal is played. This CD is full of energy and Maniac Butcher are kicking ass just as much on this release as they did in 1995 with their debut "Barbarians". The difference on this album is that they stray away from their cryptic, raw production on this record to make way for a more modern-clearer sound. However, even though it is clearer it is not overbearing or over triggered in any way. This may or may not alienate fans of the past CD's but make no mistake, the riffs and vocals on this record accommodate for the polished sound. They are still misanthropic in the Maniac Butcher element. Songs such as "Rozhodnutí..." and the title track "Masakr" are headbangers and don't sound out of place on the "Epitaph" or "Cerná Krev" albums. What I must say is a huge improvement are the vocals and the hatred is felt throughout all 6 tracks on this album. Whatever tribulations hindered Maniac Butcher in their absence, it is truly heard on "Masakr"...and in true Maniac Butcher fashion, the record is a relentless half hour assault with plenty of room for repeating and neck recovery time with all the songs and lyrics sung in their native language. This is their 7th full length record and it has not tarnished their name whatsoever. It fits perfect in their discography and with time may be my favorite Maniac Butcher record. I'm quite sure this album will go overlooked with tons of black metal releases coming out but for fans of the old school who want it raw with a modern edge then get this. It is Maniac Butcher in its purest form and quite a breath of fresh air to hear this style sound genuine with so many new bands trying to reinvent the sound. They haven't missed a beat and have maintained their roots without jeopardizing their feeling of the previous albums. Don't think twice!!!

8/10

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ceremonial Castings - Salem 1692 (2008)



Full Length,
2008


Ceremonial Castings is quite possibly, one of the most underrated Black Metal bands from the USA, but have never garnered enough recognition. And that is the reason I wrote this review. The review is about their 6th full-length release titled “Salem 1692”. As the name suggests, “Salem 1692” is a concept album about the Salem Witch Trials in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. Supposedly Nick and Jake Superchi are direct descendents, thus establishing a direct link to this event.

I shall skip the history lesson and go straight to the music. What you will see here is a different ‘Ceremonial Castings’. This album is less chaotic and brings forth a more melodic approach which works brilliantly. From the first track, we are thrust into the world that was in 1692, A world that is alien to us, but a world that is more menacing and evil than we have ever experienced.

The album opens with an atmospheric intro which is a nice keyboard melody and immediately builds into a crescendo of chaotic raw black metal. Jake’s vocals kick off at this point and you cant help but feel a chilling atmosphere of evil around you. This gives way to a brilliant riff which has to be heard to be believed. It will make you stop whatever you are doing and make you listen to this with every ounce of concentration that you possess. Jake has outdone himself with the guitars. He brings forth a nice mix of lightning fast riffs and slow, mournful ones. The riffs are aimed to mesmerize you. It is almost as if you are caught in a spell, where you cant do anything except listen to this album.

The vocals have always been one of the best aspects of Ceremonial Casting’s music. And as usual, it does not disappoint. Jake has a vicious shriek that just grabs you by your throat and He uses some guttural vocals as well, similar to the ones used in the previous releases. Nick uses some clean vocals that imparts a feeling of calm to the listener. Female vocals are used at a few points in the album and the result is simply stunning. She has a beautiful voice and mainly depicts the story from the “witch’s” point of view.

The drumming is also different from the previous releases. Gone are the constant furious blast-beats, to give way to a varied drumming pattern. The best feature of the drumming is that it does not take anything away from the music, but simply enhances it. The blasts still remain, but are used lesser than before giving way to a slower repetitive pattern that does its job of slowing the pace of the music down a notch.

Now to the best aspect of the album – The Keyboards. Nick has done a brilliant job with the keyboards and the synths. The keyboards sound magical and create a perfect atmosphere and depth to the music. It is masterfully done, and I honestly have not heard keys being used so effectively for a long time. It is used in the perfect amount, without sounding cheesy or too pretentious (read : Dimmu Borgir).

The production is perfect. It does not sound overproduced. The sound retains the raw grimness, but every instrument can be heard clearly. Nicely mixed and everything sounds great. Still no bass, but the lack of a bass is not a problem at all. It does not affect the music whatsoever.

In my opinion, this is better than any history lesson. Hardly ever will you hear an album this powerful. It takes you on a journey through time. A time where the farce known as 'religion' dominated the world and poisoned people's minds. This is a release that should not be ignored. Its almost as if you are experiencing it yourself. So, turn on the speakers and listen to this release and find yourself in a world; a cold, evil menacing world. Enjoy the ride. This is not the best in symphonic black metal but is a very good release, all the same. And if you like concept albums, you'll love this one.

8.5/10

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Audio Interview with the legendary Paul Speckmann (Master, Death Strike, Abominator etc.)


Infernal Dominion presents a very special feature for all our readers and it is nothing else than an audio interview done with the great Paul Speckmann from Master. It was quite an honor for me to do it when Paul asked me to and both of us enjoyed doing it a lot! 


Here is Part I of this brutal interview on Blogger Video. I shall be featuring it on my radio show hosted by Brutal Existence Radio, USA the next time.


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Part II


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Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Dead - Ritual Executions (2010)


Full Length, Diabolical Conquest Records
2010



Whenever I get fed up of the brooding chaos in my daily life, I always try to find something splenderous and compelling. An entity which would simply give a straight thud onto my face with a full frontal blow and breaks my cranial chords. Yeah, sounds like a whacky idea but being an extreme metal fanatic, I can't expect something whiny and chirpy to enrapture my wicked senses. I was hunting greedily for a similar object a few months back when I chanced to obtain this CD called as ''Ritual Executions'' by ''The Dead''. I didn't exactly know as to what I should expect from that disc and I simply popped it in my player with a child like curiosity, as always. 
After a few seconds, I observed a very despicable swarming sound which was ejaculated by my computer speakers. That ''sound'' soon grew into an intensly gratifying plod of ominous and eerie wall of droning sonic incantations. It began in a very loathsome ritualistic demeanor and I started getting waves of impious contempt as soon as the vocals descended upon my ears. The unholy persecutor of those deranged prophecies announced that ''Never bury your dead'' because ''way down deep, the dead never sleep. Cold graves are restless, so BURN YOUR DEAD!'' Getting hugely impressed by these words of wisdom, I grew totally attentive of the rest of the rituals to follow. The proceedings grew a lot more profound as the first ritual was ceasing towards a very enchanting end.


Totally awe-struck after the first ritual assualt, I turned on to the second one which started in a trance enducing groove which led to a path of infernal damnation. 
Heavily sonorous drums and the abyssic grunts of the deranged ritual commander rocked my senses and left no room for reprieve. This particular ritual spoke of a ''Cannibal Abattoir'' where scenes of butchering the mortals and hanging their skins to the hooks was emphasized. It weaved a catastrophic scenario of mortal ruination and left behind gory scenes in my mind. Then I got hooked to the third ritual which emanated abruptly in a very bleak and chaotic manner. I had already envisioned spirits crawling across my room which weaved a labyrinth of dismay. But I just couldn't give up and threw myself into the maze of horrendous symphonies. 


This ritual called as ''Centurian'' spoke about an evil pandemonium where a progeny of hell was supposed to crush the enemies with brute force. After descending into a hideous thump, I was immediately taken aback by the 4th ritual which started in a flurry of apocalyptic cacophonies. Diabolical summonings of rage continued to pummel my brain until the chaos ceased into a convulsive hymn of languish. The persecutor gave a loud groan of his conjuration and howled nefariously. As usual, the ceremonial hymn ceased into tranquility but it rised again as a crescendo when the fifth ritual began. 
My auditory senses simply trodded with the sinister passage which was created by this abomination. It told me to rise up for a war, where I must wash away the filth of humanity as the lord of hell would arrive and devour it all. A stream of tumultous ardour ran through my veins as I was repeatedly crushed by the groovy dissonance of ''Ritual Executions''. Now, I felt a victorious gleam in my eyes and my head started moving to and fro with the morose crepitation. 


The 6th ritual ''Blood Angel'' came, saw and conquered with its delightful yet vile raucity. It picturized an undead queen of vampyric descent who had an eternal lust for blood. Ravishing hymns of her praise were repeatedly sang and carried ahead with a bedlam of atonal rhythms. 
Coming towards the final ritual, my brain was in an evil trance and I could see sweat flowing down my body. I immediately gulped down a few shots of water and went to hear what the decisive evocation had to offer. ''Death Metal Suicide'' was what it was called and it brought me out of the state of bludgeoning trance which had captivated me for more than 40 minutes. It was a soothing balm which was characterized by a subtle tonality and gloomy harmonies. But I was still dumb struck even after the ritual compilation got over because it left such a lasting impact on my brain, which was very tough to get over with. 


After I gained my senses back, I tried to sum up the overall attributes of this bestial sanctification. I arrived at the point that The Dead had given birth to rituals so bizarre and foul, that it would be harder for anyone to stay away from its demented quality. I
t was a death metal ceremony t
o my ears and mind,  which combined the nauseous qualities of doom and the trance enducing fervor of stoner/sludge which had weaved ghastly components of calamitous disdain. Diabolical Conquest Records have really discovered a bestial horde which can only promise to march ahead in its colossal style and mow down the abysmal preachers of divinity forever!



Final Rating: 9/10

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Thy Only Forgotten - Mythos Daemonium (2009)


Full Length, Lux Inframundis Productions
2009



Whenever I gaze at the cosmic horizon, I feel an urge to submerge myself in its fathomless depths and get caressed by its colossal chasms. But this cosmic consciousness is not always easy to be achieved; it needs a special catalyst, a tool which can take you over to an unearthly trance of gloom. 

To my ease, there are some charismatic entities whose epochal symphonies lead me to an astral path of illumination and I got a sheer taste of it recently by a glorious Mexican entity called as - Thy Only Forgotten.
Talking about this horde, they are not a recent congregation in the underground extreme metal scenario and actually formed way back in 1993. But they couldn't proceed further after releasing a demo in 1996. There was a nefarious silence howling in the voids since almost 13 years and that would have certainly pinched them. Enter 2008 and the band is resurrected, maybe by an abrupt vision of re-creating an epic demenaor which most of the bands of today's age lack. 
Last year, they unleashed their first full-length entitled as ''Mythos Daemonium'' on Lux Inframundis Production. The band's status and important information is still pretty discreet since they insist on maintaining obscurity and haven't really published lyrics nor have a Myspace. But as far as I know, their current battalion comprises of the fantastic Antonio Leon (The Chasm fame) and his inputs are distincly audible in their recent offering. 

Mythos Daemonium is all about atmosphere, a very beautiful and peculiar instrument which co-relates to an artist and his creation. He uses his tools to paint the impressions which he perceives in his mind and splashes them out in grand fashion. Some are able to perceive it but some aren't. The same thing applies for extreme  music as its not everyone's cup of tea to perceive disharmonies as dense and atmospheric as Thy Only Forgotten or The Chasm. But then the underground focuses on reaching out to a 'class' rather than a 'mass'. The musicians are nothing less than an artist trying to pour their earnest feelings out via their instruments. 

The vocal passages, guitar tone and the overall charm possessed by this album is pretty much reminicscent of The Chasm - especially their latest offering Farseeing the Paranormal Abysm. But that is pretty obvious because they have the mastermind - Antonio behind them both. The basic thing which struck me on hearing the album for the first time was the slower, melancholic passages. It felt as I am drowning in a stream of psychedelia and getting deeper in it after every listen. This is the sheer power which atmospheric music can portray! The way it hypnotizes you is splendorous. 

Subtle tremelo melodies work like a potion to keep oneself enraptured and swaying with the terrific passages of gloom which makes you feel like eternity. 



If I have to describe the overall grandeur by a mere exclamatory obligation, then I dont think that I would have anything else coming out of my vocal chords apart from - wow!

After dripping myself totally into this release, I would have also loved to get an insight into the lyrical theme but sadly, I couldn't find any. Going from the name and the cover art, I can at least perceive that it has some relation with Aztec mythology, displaying visions of conquest and triumph. If anyone has them, please let me know.

But now, I wouldn't just conclude my article in a tad clichéd manner but would rather share a few honest words. In this short-lived life marred with despondency and traumas, there are only certain things which are capable of giving a feeling of glory and content. Extreme metal is one of those prized entities for sure, and bands like these are sheer exemplaries of what I am talking about. If you share a similar vision and want to have another 40 minutes of veneration, then Mythos Daemonium would be one of those cherishable moments for you.

Monday, July 26, 2010

October Falls - A Collapse of Faith



Full-length, Debemur Morti
2010



Finally…One of the most awaited releases of this calendar year is out. It has been around 2 years since their mastermind; M. Lehto released ‘The Womb of Primordial Nature’ and left everybody speechless. Expectations for the next release were high as October Falls have released some brilliant material throughout the years. This is one of the few bands that do not have a single weak release in their entire catalogue. So, ‘The Collapse of Faith’ should surpass all expectations too, right? DAMN RIGHT. What we have here is a beautiful, majestic release that will take you on a moving, captivating journey which is both, soothing and depressing at times.

In ‘The Collapse of Faith’, October Falls have picked up where ‘the Womb of Primordial Nature’ left off. It basically consists of one long 42 minute track divided into three parts. And each part flows seamlessly into the next. The main feature of the composition of the songs is their simplicity. There are just a few main riffs and the rest are all subtle variations added to them. There are hardly any catchy riffs or any epic lead riffs that define a particular track. But that is not a bad thing. The whole songs flow gracefully and seamlessly as one and keep the listener captivated to it without losing the slightest bit of attention throughout the 40+ minutes that they run for. Another feature of the album is the stunning interplay between the electric and acoustic guitars. The whole album carefully blends the electric and acoustic sets against a background of melancholy and gloom. Every song builds upon itself until it reaches a point where it all comes crashing down in a climax, only to begin anew with a single soft acoustic guitar and start the cycle again. Lehto’s raspy vocals are perfect for this music. There are hardly any variations in them but are perfect and add to the atmosphere of the songs. Certain parts where the tremolo picked riffs merge with the beautiful acoustic strumming in the background with the Lehto’s rasps ranting against humanity and society create a morose atmosphere that has to be felt to be experienced. The drumming in this release is excellent. It adds yet another dimension to this album and also adds to the overall sound with his chaotic fills during the transitions from one riff to another.

There is a lot of melody to be found here. Right from the acoustic start to the riffs and the majestic piano bit towards the end of part II, melody is found in abundance. But it is never overdone or cheesy. The production is perfect. They have achieved the perfect blend between the rough production and clarity. It couldn’t have been better.

This is a stunning release. Right from the acoustic part which starts the album, it is an experience. Not meant for just a casual listen. The album is a culmination of everything that October Falls have done so far and could be branded as their best release yet. This album is depressing, but not in an evil or a suicidal way. Its beauty radiates emotion, sadness and melancholy. This is not a release that gets old quickly. In fact, its been getting better with every listen.

Definitely recommended for people with an open mind and fans of Agalloch, Empyrium, Katatonia, Drudkh, old Opeth or anyone who is into black/folk and neofolk. This is October Fall’s most complete work so far.

9/10

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Interview with Lille Gruber of Defeated Sanity

Infernal Dominion unleashes an interview with the mighty blast monster - Lille Gruber from the sickest band from Germany and perhaps the reigning brutal death metal stalwarts of our century - Defeated Sanity. Scroll down to read what this smiling assassin has to say about his band and death metal in particular! 
Conducted by - Ankit Sinha










ID:  Hello Lille, first of all, I would like to congratulate you for the latest album 'Chapters of Repugance'' which has been hideously successful in breaking a ligament or two off my auditory system with its unfathomably sick onslaughts on my poor ears since a few months now. Your next release would probably disable my hearing abilities totally, I fear. I guess that you have must been getting similar complaints from a lot of people worldwide in the past few months. 

Lille: Haha thank you sounds like a nice compliment. Glad you like it. We are indeed already thinking about the next release, so let's see what we can do to mutilate people out there haha!

ID: 1994 was the golden year when Defeated Sanity was born out of the cradle of Germany's underground abysms, but it took 6 years for you to release your first promo. What were the reasons behind this delay? Also, how hard was it to find like-minded and able musicians from your country to collaborate on one of the most extremest bands ever formed? 

Lille: I think, actually, to name the year 1994 as the beggining was a mistake that we made in our bio. It was more the point when our original guitarist and me started jamming. The real beginning was 1998/99 when Münzner/Köhler/Keller joined us to form an actual band. Still took a long time til the release of our debut. The reasons for that were to find the right style, trying to make our discography flawless from the start!

ID:  Its pretty apparent that you are also inclined a lot towards Jazz as Defeated Sanity's insturmental chaos revels in a lot of handsome Jazz oriented sections. Though Jazz has been fused suavely with DM by a lot of bands previously, your ideas were certainly tad different and that is purely reflected by the intricate riff/drum structures been employed by you. What is the basic formula which keep in mind for developing the song structures? 

Lille: Interesting subject. Just yesterday I saw a band of Academic Jazzers trying to make a Jazz/Metal Mix and it was just horrible!! The songwriting seemed so untalented and the band seemed arrogant towards Metal, not taking it seriously enough. There exactly is the point. You gotta take your shit serious. For us everything we compose has to be Death Metal, even if we use crazy "jazzy" shit it has to fit the atmosphere and it can't sound funny, relaxed or smooth, whatever. The dangerous thing for many musicians interested in jazz, etc.. also is to get sucked into it further and to start thinking that is their music now when it really isn't. Well that didn't happen to us and never will. 

ID: After creating tremors in Germany and beyond with your splits and promos, the ultimate catastrophe arrived when Prelude to the Tragedy was unleashed in 2004. It definitely garnered a great attention in the DM scenario worldwide and tossed your band on the the roster of 'the next big thing' to keep an eye on by hordes of BDM afficianados. Though that was just a trailer of the apocalypse which was about to fall upon the mankind with the future releases, it was highly responsible for diseasing our minds with Defeated Sanity's trademark insanity. How was it like working on that album and what were some of the most memorable incidences which you remember during the song writing/recording process for the same?

Lille: Funny, that you look at it that way ("trailer of the apocalypse") because that is why we chose the album title. This release was really meant to be the Prelude to the tragedy. When we composed, recorded and released it we knew this was the time in our career when we finally got strong enough to let people know we are there. Especially because we already had about 2-3 songs written for the next album and we knew it was gonna get just better and better.

About incidences, I remember we all had a fucking rough time recording it. Kelly, our singer back then had to interrupt the recordings because of a severe throat disease which also resulted in this permanent beeping in your ear that you get, when your stressed too much, can't remember that term though. I played this album with a carpal tunnel problem that kept me from playing for 3 months before the recordings, and Wolfgang also had some problems with his tendons.....not a very good time we had while recording, but good came of it.



ID:  Enter 2007 and the DM crowd gets an even more heavier sledge hammer-ish blow on their face with the release of ''Psalms of the Moribund'' - an album which could be tagged as nothing less than '' earth shattering'' in the literal manner. Even the people who had been keeping an eye on your proceedings would not have been able to imagine such cranium crushing heaviness spewed out by Psalms. Jens' hypnotical guttural inhales added just another dimension to the overall music which had grown way more tighter and complex than Prelude. But the biggest highlight would certainly be your breathtaking drumming prowess, I mean it was an absolute frenzy of hyper blasting torment! I would really love if you could shed light on the overall song writing on Psalms. Also, how hard it was to develop those dense vocal patterns for the highly intricate music? 

Lille: Thanks before all for the huge compliment!
Well the songwriting on Psalms.....its pretty sad to be honest. Most ot the songs I developed alone by recording the guitars onto a 8 track recorder, then drumming along to the guitars to come up with drum patterns. Then when these demos were done, I would write them down on tab and teach them to both guitarists (who were both living more than 5 hours away which made rehearsals hard for DS). To teach these songs to Jacob was really one of the last steps to complete the album as he was only a session member back then.
You see, for this album the songwriting was kinda lonely job and not very co-operative for most of the tracks.
Only I and Jens, who lived near, got together from time to time to work on vocal lines. I had about 90% of patterns and lyrics written and Jens added a few lines and a few ideas to it. By the way, the reason for this vocal style was that we thought that the vocals needed to bring catchieness and calmness into the music. A singer accentuating all of the tech shit would have been overkill I think.



ID: One frequent issue which has bothered Defeated Sanity is the various line-up changes. Both Wolfgang and Jens left the band after Psalms which would have made your job a bit more harsh to find better or equivalent replacements. In fact all the three full lengths have different vocalists which actually makes them sound individual and a tad different than one another. Christian's stint with the band was also pretty shortlived and now we know him better with bands like Obscura, Spawn of Possession and Necrophagist. What were the reasons due to which such highly talented musicians had to leave the band? 

Lille: Individual reasons: 
Jens was a chemistry issue with the whole band,

Wolfgang had problems with his arms (of course partly due to his age) and also with learning tons of new material

Münzner and DS parted ways cus we didn't have the same ideas about songwriting, sound etc...had obviously nothing to do with his playing skills



ID: After the departure of Jens, Konni of Despondency/Resection fame took over the vocal duties for your live acts but only for a brief amount of time. Why didn't you consider taking him as a full time vocalist? Which other vocalists were auditoned for this job?

Lille: We just didn't like the fact of someone singing in another bands already, especially when they are of such importance as Despondency (RIP). That was why we tried to dig out AJ, because no one had heard of him in a long time and we knew that people have been missing his voice as much as we have! About other vocalists, we had great guys try out from all sorts of places via internet but we tried to find a person from Germany. None of those who have tried from here seemed up to par though.

ID:  Now finally pouncing upon your latest magnum opus - '' Chapters of Repugnance'', I experience a child like exuberance while describing the barbaric attributes of its slanderous atonal torments. It deviously proceeded from where Psalms had ended in all its rapturous grandeur and left an even more suave impression on my mind than what the former did. The recruitment of A.J. Magana (Disgorge/Deprecated) worked wonders for you as his guttural demolition fitted the highly abrasive nature of Chapter's music with absolute perfection. But wasn't it tought to work on the rehearsals for such highly complex songs because of the vast difference in A.J.'s location? How did you create the whole blue print for the rehearsal/recording with him? 

Lille: More than 80% of the lyrics and vocal patterns were already written when he came here. We recorded demo's with me singing the vocal patterns/lyrics over the music and sent them to him via e-mail to give him a rough idea of the songs. When AJ came here 5 days before the studio sessions we went over the songs and put them to perfection. He also changed some parts of the lyrics in order to make the patterns flow even better.




ID: I would like to know that how did you finally decide to take A.J. as a full time vocalist for your band. Didn't the country difference act as a huge hindrance for not only the recording but also for the live shows? You even did some shows without his vocal services because of some issues which had popped in for him.

Lille: Right now is a very open phase for DS still. We wanna try to keep AJ in the band, although it obviously is a big task to co-ordinate everything. We will see how that will progress. Musically, there is none that fits us better. It's just a great match. We also worked on new songs together already with everyone contributing.....it could be another great cooperation. But we need to make big sacrifices,  especially AJ with all the travelling.




ID: Apart from Mr. Magana's mayhemic contributions, Christian and Jacob were the major partners in crime who weaved a malicious miasma with their jaw dropping string attacks. Jacob's bass lines were extremely crucial for making the album sound so monstrously epic and he complemented Christian's spontaneous riff assualt with panache. How do you feel about this tremendous element which those two guys brought in for Defeated Sanity?

Lille: I could not be happier with the core of the band right now. Jacob and Chris are fucking sick and we are a good musical entity. We also write music together opposed to back then when I was just composing shit all alone.






ID: Your albums are full with some of the most gratifying and insanely labyrinthine songs which leave the listeners with dumb with awe. But it is definitely not as easy as how it sounds to us. Which were some of the most challening songs which you came across in your entire career with Defeated Sanity?

Lille: I gotta say that Blissfully Exsanguinated is the song that was most challenging to write for me. Mainly talking about the lyrics here. I wanted to transport a complex story within a very short song which is a veeeeeeeery hard job. But I managed to let it flow perfectly, of course with AJ's help. Also playing wise, it's one of the most challenging and innovative songs of ours.


ID: It is also known that you are also an ace guitarist though we haven't been exposed to your string carnage apart from the sessions you did for Sinners Bleed. What actually happened to the proposed ''Dark Jazz Rock'' project where you were supposed to play guitars with Wolfgang on drums? Have you also considered playing guitars fulltime for some another DM project?

Lille: I will not play in another DM project, because all the Death Metal riffs I write are obviously gonna be used for DS. But that Jazzy project is coming along nicely. Just improvising anyways. We hope to enter a studio soon and record some of these improvisations....if the stuff turns out good we can release it.





ID: You had also collaborated with Turkish brutal death metallers Cenotaph for their latest offering ''Putrescent Infectious Rabidity'' and again, the percussive demeanor took most of the attention on that album. How did you get in touch with those fellows and what was the recording process for the album? Was it a totally internet based collaboration or you had a personal tete-a-tete with the members also?

Lille: Got in touch with them, because Batu offered himself to help out DS, which we only didn't do because we already found Konni to help us. Then he asked me if I would do their album and I said yes. Indeed an internet thing, never met them in my life yet haha.





ID: The lyrics for your music have also been a very special highlight. They have mostly focused on the horrors and degradation of mortal life but Chapters of Repugnance have had some more atrocious and realistic lyrics, especially on ''Engulfed in Excruciation''. What is your primal approach for writing lyrics and how do you think that it is important to even jot lyrics for an ultra brutal death metal band, where one can barely decipher as to what's being sung by the vocalist? And, were Christian and Jacob also involved with the lyric writing on Chapters? 

Lille: Lyrics were mainly written by me with some help from AJ and some other people too. Lyrics have to flow perfectly with the music and have to give a song the perfect dramaturgy. I bet if you try you can read along each word sung on Chapters. He did a very good job at being super guttural but still making the lyrics audible.



ID: How did the deal with Willowtip Records came along?

Lille: A lot of labels made us offers after our deal with Grindethic was ended. Willowtip had the best offer, as far as we could judge.

ID: Before being signed to Willowtip, your earlier full lengths had been released by Grindethic Records, who were more of a deathgrind/goregrind label before they signed a complex death metal band like yours. How did they treat your musical abilities and how much were you satisfied with the amount of promotion done by them? 

Lille: I think they did the best they could do and they will always be our brothers. Each time we have been to the UK they have helped us alot. Always supporting! Great people!

ID:  Now, talking about the music again, one can notice a lot of slamming elements intervowen adeptly with the gravity defying, hyper blasting atrocity of the music. How far have you been influenced with the whole ''Slam Death Metal'' genre and why did you actually consider involving its elements into Defeated Sanity's music?

Lille: Hmmm I guess we always wanted to pick the best out of Death Metal to come as close as possible to the "ultimative death metal style". Slam is essential to us, as is technicality, as is speed, as is somber, abysmal atmosphere. Our motto is, never forget the past but also never forget the present and future either. Get with the times and update your sound with what is good......deathcore breakdowns are not included in that by the way.



ID: What all shows or announcement do you guys have in the pipe-line?

Lille: A lot of unconfirmed shit, which could be amazing if it happens. Also finally getting into our own country a bit more, which is a plus.


ID: Now going down the memory lane, tell me that how did your journey as a metalhead began and which were the albums/songs which exposed you to whole death metal movement during your younger days?

Lille: First thing I heard after 2 years of Metallica, Maiden and Megadeth,etc.., was Morgoth "The Eternal Fall", Atrocity "Hallucinations", Obituary "Cause of Death", Death "Human"....then for even more brutal shit CC "Tomb of the Mutilated" and Monstrosity's first album. Great fucking times! 




ID: Name some of the drummers/guitarists (not strictly metal) which have been a major influence on your style? 

Lille: Pick up the booklet for Prelude to the Tragedy, almost all of them are in there.


ID: What is your opinion about the current German death metal scene and which bands do you think are the better ones from there?

Lille: Good bands from Germany: Sinners Bleed, Despondency (rip), Infested (rip), Ingurgitating Oblivion, Necrophagist obviously....umm tons more, just getting lazy here haha.



ID:  Which current/upcoming bands do you like the best from the existing underground DM scenario? Are there any special tips and ideas which you would like to share with many of the young turks who are trying hard to play technical and hard hitting death metal? 

Lille: The shit that is blowing me away recently is Scatorgy (toured with them and they are really promising), Putridity (check the new songs, fucking relentless shit), Devourments "Unleash the carnivores" is sick as fuck....etc etc.
My tips for young bands I guess: rather focus on hard hitting (= brutal) than go for technical (= learning complicated arpeggios before being able to write a solid song or palm mute a powerchord the right way). Technicality comes when you have a solid foundation to build on.

ID: Coming towards the end of this grueling interview, I would like to thank you loads for sparing your crucial time to answer my questions. I feel absolutely honored to have interviewed one of the best death metal musicians to have ever embraced planet earth! Wish you all the luck for the upcoming ventures of Defeated Sanity.

The final space is all yours. Feel free to comment whatever you felt about the questionnaire and your brutal thoughts for our readers.

Lille: Hey thank you for the interview, Ankit! Hails to all our fans worldwide. Watch out for more brutal releases and come to the fucking shows!
Keep it sick

Lille/DS



Check out Defeated Sanity at - http://www.myspace.com/defeatedsanity

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Uncleansed - Domination of the Faithful


Full Length, Grindethic Records
2010



2010 marks as the year when the long-awaited debut of Texan horde Uncleansed finally sees the light of day and it indeed sounds like a pretty fruitful wait. 
The band's inception dates back to 2006 when 5 kindered souls got together to play some of the vilest and unwholesome death metal to have ever emerged from Texas and immediately began creating ideas to accomplish this goal. A line-up consisting of some upstanding names in underground death metal like the prolific Shawn Whitaker (Insidious Decrepancy, Viral Load, Grotesque Formation), Jim Case (Imprecation, Infernal Dominion) and Darrel White (Viral Load) would certainly raise the expectation level to dizzying heights and an immediate desire to get slapped by some abrasive tunes. But sadly their visions for an unnholy domination couldn't be fulfilled instantly since this debut venture took 3 long years to be released. Better late then never though, I at least got to hear it and enjoyed the listening experience throughout. 
What we have on ''Domination of the Faithful'' is an enriching blend of old New York Death Metal styled death metal with modern brutality. Jim Case' riffing clearly reminds me of his days with Infernal Dominion where he had created a pretty Incantation-esque, slow paced and diabolical style of death metal and Whitaker's trademark guttural style of vocals hints of Insidious Decrepancy though there aren't much of the groovy/slammish elements on Domination. It simply is a straight forward death metal bludgeoning which has the stern potentiality to captivate an afficianado of the afore-mentioned styles/bands from the beginning till the very end. Loads of high end tremolo picked/down picked riffs, subtle chord progressions and time signatures savored my hunger for some delicious death metal. Darrel's drumming has been quite spot-on with proficient double kicks which go synonymous with the tempo changes. Handsome snare/cymbal patterns and diligently paced blasts add up to the percussive demenaour of Mr. White. The snare sound almost reminds me of the latest Insidious Decrepancy though the latter contained of programmed drum patterns. 


Some of the best moments on the album are on tracks like ''The Summoning'' which begins in a grand fashion, with a great opening rhythm and carries on the hammering suavely until the chaos ceases to a beautifully doom-laced riff, clearly reminding me of Incantation with Shawn's incredible guttural rasps enhancing its notoriety. ''Sacrament of the Ancients'' is another worth mention which begins with an echoing bass endured riff  and continues on to a beautifully carved melodic rhythm, paving way more for yet another rapturous tremolo riff and many more such time signatures to endure the listener further. 
The title track's intro starts off very much like Once Revered (Insidious Decrepancy - Extirpating Omniscient Certitude) and continues the blaze with proficient morbidity. Supported by a few bass sections, the riffs go on to converge to a short Krisiun-esque lead to finish off the song effectively. ''Molecular Immolation'' starts with a catchy melodic riff which continues for till half a minute and descends into other time signatures sporadically. This track also reeks in a doom-laden section towards the middle and leaves me completely rejoiced. ''Conquest of the Heaven'' begins its march with a stellar blast and more tremolos and then ceases to a mid pace with a drowsy bass riff which is quite short lived and the initial carnage ascends once again. A catchy chorus strikes an instant chord with my ears and then the mid-paced frenzy arrives again to climax the rituals of this fantastic musical spectacle.
As you must have already gathered from the description above, the musicians in Uncleansed have reveled in excellent team work which shows up for the brilliant progressions and structures of the songs. Whilst many of the bands fail to mix the ingredients together in vain of brutality and instrumental wankery, these Texan death metal cowboys show why their ranch is considered as one the most destructive in the whole underground death metal scene. This release doesn't actually add a new dimension to death metal nor does it speak of innovation but it actually highlights some striking points of making enjoyable brutal death metal. Get this and see for yourself. 



Official Myspace -
http://www.myspace.com/uncleansedtxdm