Review: Chiral – Winter Eternal (Demo)

Posted: September 13, 2014 in ALERT: Awesome new music, Demo Review
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As you may have gathered from my previous review, one of my new favourite discoveries this year has been Italy’s Chiral. Their ‘Abisso’ release was an ambitious, vast display of black metal majesty. So I did the sensible thing and and forgot to check out their other release from earlier this year, their three track ‘Winter Eternal’ demo. Because, you know, I’ve got too much shit to do. But on recommending them to a friend, I remembered about it and so cranked it.

If you are expecting something similar to the cold, icy ‘Abisso’, you’d be off the mark. This has much more to do with the gloomy death metal of early Swedeath, with elements of black metal making brief appearances. The vocals on opener ‘Sulphur’ are much more guttural than ‘Abisso’, and the riffs and general style is much more in the vein of Eucharist or early Katatonia, with flashes of Unanimated or Tiamat too. The atmosphere is most reminiscient of the black metal path that Chiral have taken after this; it’s bleak and suffocating.

Second track ‘Eternal Winter Day’ is pure Dissection worship, a cacophonous blending of thunderous death metal and buzzing, black metal riffs. It has those quieter, acoustic moments that make ‘Abisso’ so vital and fresh, but here mix them with some crescendoing Swedish death metal to great effect. Closer ‘When Prayers Will Have Nothing Left to Say’ is a two minute piano outro with crashes of thunder to close out the demo.

These are two excellent tracks of murky death metal with black metal atmospherics and are a cool throwback to the early days of the Swedish scene. My only criticism really is the final track, which almost could have been trimmed off without losing much. Maybe on a longer release it would’ve worked better, but on such a short release it seems superfluous. The two main tracks are definitely worth checking out however, even if they bare little resemblence to the beast that Chiral would become only months later.

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