Posts Tagged ‘France’


‘Phlogiston Cartharsis’ is the much anticipated new full length from imperious French individual P.H.O.B.O.S, ready to unleash their suffocating blackened industrial doom upon the world after their much acclaimed split with fellow Gallic black metal gods Blut Aus Nord and 2015’s ‘श्मशान काली’ EP. Transcending Obscurity will be dropping this bomb in September.

‘Biomorphorror’ begins with clashing industrial sounds before a hellish riffs drags us to deep recesses of our earth. Submerging us in a Godfleshian nightmare, P.H.O.B.O.S. pour blackened tar over each riff and the almost whispered rasps are deeply unsettling. Imagine Godflesh, Aborym and Sunn0))) all fighting in a tarpit, and you’re approaching the sonic dread reached on tracks like ‘Igneous Tephrapotheosis’. Even the song titles are impenetrable; unknown horrors writhing in galaxial abysses.

‘Phlogiston Cartharsis’ is probably one of, if not THE, most terrifying pieces of music you’ll hear this year. You think you are ready for heavy, or dread but the subtle industrial tinges adds even more to the sonic terrorism on show. P.H.O.B.O.S. are the Mariana Trench of metal; deep, dark, suffocating and unexplored. Join them, they have such sights to show you.–997291130295639/


Image result for derealized isolation poetry

Normally when you hear ‘France’ and ‘death metal’, your mind is instantly drawn to heavweights Gojira. Well, Derealized are here to make you realise that there is more to French death metal than that. ‘Isolation Poetry’ is the debut full length from a band that are prepared to dazzle you with technicality as well as razor edged savagery. It dropped last year through Finisterian Dead End Records, but I have been remiss in giving it the proper kudos until now.

The creaky, rumbling opening to ‘Devil’s Got Green Eyes’ soon dissolves into a whirling dervish of blasting, growling and spiralling riffs. This is a devilishly technical record, coating all the maddening death metal riffing with a blackened, poisoned edge. The demonic ‘Opium Den’ is a personal highlight; where you can sense real Aborted or Cryptopsy influences burrowing through. Vocalist Myriam Fischer is particularly fearsome; her throaty roar accompanies you upon this winding journing through the crevasses of darkness.

‘Cover Your Eyes’ comes as a welcome respite in between titans of extremity. The constant barrage can be a little much at times but you can’t really fault the band on their desire to display what they can do. In fact, the quieter sections do what they did in early Opeth records, providing islands of calm within the oceans of stormy death metal. And this is death metal as base, with chugging deathcore moments battling the howling black metal influences to create something varied and engrossing.

My only real issue with ‘Isolation Poetry’ is some of the songs seem like they are longer than they need to be. Don’t get me wrong, this kind of progressive technical death metal is great, but sometimes it feels like a little reigning in of the songwriting would help. But if you’re looking for an example of wonderful technical abilities, meshed with genuine atmospheres of dread and blackness, then ‘Isolation Poetry’ ticks those boxes. If you can’t get enough of the likes of Anata, Cryptopsy or Psycroptic then Derealized should be next on your list.

This striking French black metal debut from Infernal Blast is  a torrent of violent, dark war metal. ‘Wolves Elitism Speech’ has no agenda other than to tear you apart from the ears down, and is another example of how far one man bands have come from badly produced bedroom acts. The cassette is out on 17th November through War Arts Productions.

Opener ‘Destruction Process’ is a vicious, barrelling nightmare of a track, with an eruption of blastbeats peppering a murky and dense guitar attack. This style continues undaunted throughout, from the carnage of the short ‘No Redemption No Remorse’ to the unremitted barbarism of ‘Wolf Hunting’. There isn’t a lot of room for variation but in a seventeen minute release you don’t need it. The creepy samples provide respite enough between the kind of metal that personifies how life is going; bleak, barbaric and dehumanising. ‘Wolves Elitism Speech’ has no care for you, it merely provides a dirty window into our future.

Infernal Blast have a bright future. Well, bright like a nuclear holocaust bright, as their music is apocalyptic, visceral and comes from the primal instincts of man for violence and savagery. ‘Wolves Elitism Speech’ claws and slavers at you, and it is ready to be unleashed on the wider world.


French black metallers Abduction have returned after a long absence from the scene with their debut full length ‘Une Ombre Régit Les Ombres’. First coming on the scene in 2006, their debut demo in 2010 garnered a lot of interest, and finally the Dissection-inspired monster is ready to strike. It’s out now on Finisterian Dead End Records.

After the ghostly, acoustic intro, first track proper ‘Naphtalia’ hits instantly with sharp, savage riffing that oozes an insistent, dark energy. Melancholic atmospherics soak within each barbed riff and it shifts dynamically from gloomy clean sections to howling black metal rage. The shift is effortless; feeling like a natural transformation rather than forced. The songwriting is complex, mature and creates a free flowing record full of delicacy and feral rage. It is a balance that many bands strive for these days in black metal but few achieve.

Abduction paint with deft strokes, a thrilling nihilistic pallete full of powerful double kicks and savage riffing, but also trembling serenity. Eerie clean guitar sections haunt the serpentine closer ‘L’Enlèvement D’Automne’, and the likes of ‘Les Frissons Des Cimes’ is gloriously dark, but the title track takes my pick for top track here. Abduction soar with this record, delicate acoustics drifting like snowflakes in between blizzarding hails of scalding black metal fury. Stunning record

French underground death metallers Ritualization have deigned us worthy to receive their debut record in early February next year, courtesy of the good folks over at Iron Bonehead. They’ve been honing their skills for a decade now, so let us open the crypt and see what crawls out!

After the threatening ‘Conjuring of the Howling Depths’, the crunching brutality of ‘Last Rites to the Damned’ strikes with lethal force, drawing influence from the flailing chaos of Angelcorpse, or the fiery rumble of Immolation. ‘Sacraments…’ is a relentless, savage beating, with an almost blackened tone to parts of it. Blasphemous riffs cut ‘The Graveyard Coven’ to pieces like a rusty machete, with a ferocity and single minded intent that I particularly enjoy. If you like what Belphegor have done with death metal, you’re gonna really dig this record.

The menacing assault of ‘The Herald of Betrayal’ is my own highlight, with a kind of Asphyx groove meeting a rampant Deicide battering. Ritualization’s death metal is utterly unstoppable, and they aren’t afraid to throw in some tech death fretwork wizardry. The frenetic pace and constant barrage of riffing is, at times, overwhelming, and you’ll need to get a mop after listening to ‘Morbid Magick Stigmata’, becuase your brain will melt out your ears.

This is, simply put, an excellent record. Ritualization barely let up for the full forty plus minutes, and when they do it is merely to let you catch your breath before this death metal juggernaut kicks in again. Brutally heavy and punishingly fast, ‘Sacraments for the Sons of the Abyss’ is a mighty statement of intent.

Cadaveric Fumes - Dimensions Obscure

Sickening French death metal is the order of the day here from Cadaveric Fumes, whose new EP ‘Dimensions Obscure’ belches from your speakers like a Lovecraftian horror from the outer galaxies. It’s out now on Blood Harvest Records on 12″ vinyl and as a digital download.

Opener ‘Crepuscular Journey’ leads out with a hanting piano, before a crash of guitar and a churning death metal assault begins. Dark, dense and impenetrable in parts, Cadaveric Fumes create a swirling void of brutality that sucks you into madness. ‘Extatic Exirpation’ is a bit like if Bolt Thrower did a split with Atheist; strange spacey prog moments meet a devastating rumble of death. Cadaveric Fumes take your standard death metal ideas and approach them from a new angle, coming at them from those obscure dimensions and injecting their riffs with tones that are not of this world.

Cadaveric Fumes come from the place evoked in ‘Where Darkness Reigns Supreme’; the swirling void outside time and space, where death metal is pulled and twisted in all directions. The haunting piano returns, bookended by churning miasma. By the time closer ‘Swallowed into Eternity’ comes to a close, your mind will be muddled, thoughts turning to eldritch insanity and fingers reaching towards the play button, eager to delve into this madness once more. Excellent stuff!

Voix cover art

French experimentalists Aluk Tolodo dropped their latest release, ‘Voix’, in February this year on Norma Evangelium Diaboli in Europe, and it is one of those albums that explores metal as a concept of sound. Fully instrumental, enigmatic song titles merely telling you their length: it comes across immediately that this isn’t going to be an instant fix.

The opener ‘8:18’ is an urgent piece of almost post rock, with a menacing undertone to it. It is building to something, something you can never quite reach, with insistent melodies reaching, grasping upward. The second part shimmers with a glacial, black metal tremolo riff  before descending into a rumbling, tribal place. ‘Voix’ (ironically French for voices) is a flowing piece, split into six tracks but essentially one long 43 minute track. This helps the music a lot because it feels like one long journey.

It is a trance inducing experience, each listen revealing new sounds, notes, tones behind the octopian drumming performance and malevolent drone. There are quieter moments (two minutes into ‘7:01’), moments of obtuse noise intervals, and no small amount of progressive, psychedelic influence. ‘Voix’ is a record that would be ruined with vocals, as the purely instrumental methods allows you to embrace every sound, every texture. Aluk Tolodo have created a piece of musical art here; difficult to process at first but infinitely rewarding with patience.