Review: Dakhma – Astiwihad-Zohr

Posted: November 11, 2015 in Reviews
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Libation (Unto The Blessed Flame) cover art

Switzerland’s Dakhma is a true beast of the underworld. ‘Astiwihad-Zohr’ is a mini album that meshes complex theological themes with hellish soundscapes. Like the true sound of demonic incantation and void rituals, this is four tracks of death itself.

The music is a harsh mix of blackened atmosphere and rabid, primitive death metal that accompanies unholy vocals. Each track is a vicious pummelling by otherworldly forces, a place where the winds of pestilence meet dark, mystic forces. You are occasionally given respite from these dreadful howls, like later in ‘Procession (Feed from the Skull)’, but it never lasts. You are always dragged back into the endless cycle of decaying death.

Even when lonesome bass drum and ghostly acoustics ushers in ‘Spirit (From the Plane)’, which drags the kind of eastern instrumentation we’ve seen in Karl Sanders’ solo work down into the murky depths. It becomes this harrowing emanation that leaves you gibbering in the corner as if you’ve seen some great, Lovecraftian madness. By the time the horrifying death rattle of ‘Altar (Flesh Upon Me)’ is finished, you’ll be beaten, bloodied and lost within insanity’s maze. If you’re lucky, you’ll find your way out…


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