Review: Carnival of Flesh – Stories from a Fallen World

Posted: June 9, 2015 in Reviews
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Serbian black metallers Carnival of Flesh have recently been revived after a 6 year hiatus from 2008. Their particular brand of black metal has been honed from their previous work, crafting in equally quantities black metal violence and symphonic melodies.

Starting with ‘The Beginning’ (strangely), you get a sense of the depth of composition that Carnival of Flesh have put into their work. Combining chunky riffing with symphonic dashes and a clean, bass vocal line gives a dose of grandeur. This is not your tin-pot, buzzsaw black metal. This is rich with orchestral flourishes and a cracking production.

‘The Promise’ builds from the start, subtle harmony layers accompanying a Cradle-esque gothic spoken word style. This track is actually very reminscient of some of Cradle’s work, what with the symphonic elements and the eerie gothic touches. It’s a lot less dramatic, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. ‘The Horror’ possesses an almost cinematic scope in parts, while slipping in a sludgy vibe in parts. Carnival of Flesh use their orchestral arrangements well, enhancing rather than dominating the metal side of their music.

Be it the sombre sway of ‘The Pact’s opening moments, the propulsive and grandiose ‘The Battle’ or the final invocation of ‘The Regret’, Carnival of Flesh’s debut is a well rounded slab of symphonic black metal that successfully reigns in some of the excesses of the genre to craft a solid and thoroughly enjoyable debut. Proof that bombast and overindulgence does not always equate success, ‘Stories from a Fallen World’ is great.

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