Posts Tagged ‘Satanath records’

Automb - Esoterica

The debut record from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania’s Automb came out in 2018, but ‘Esoterica’ is an album that I’ve just found lurking in my collection. It was released by Satanath Records and looks to claim a place in the slowly overcrowding American black metal scene. Their new album is out this year, so it makes sense to visit this first.

After the gloomy intro title track, we get the even gloomier harshness of ‘Horned God’ which, even though it brings fiery riffing and some killer drumming seems to be smothered in this dense melancholy. The guitar tone is sharp and precise; there’s a little bit of Hypocrisy in there and the savage thrust of ‘Mourned’ is a potent track among an album littered with them. ‘Call of Hekate’ ripples with the kind of melodic leads that Dissection would’ve been proud of, while the blasting ‘Blood Moon’ reminds you that the brimstone fury is still very much a driving force underneath ‘Esoterica’s blackened bonnet.

‘Esoterica’ is a strong debut, full of ferocious black metal shot through with a little Gothenburg guitarwork. But the regal bleakness of ‘Frozen’ is an example of where Automb are capable of taking their sound if they should decide. I’m going to search out their new record with a little more urgency now. Excellent.

Degragore - From Sin to Redemption

Hungarian brutal death metal sounds like a fine way to spend a wet Wednesday afternoon, and the devastation wrought by Degragore on their latest release, ‘From Sin to Redemption’ is crushing even by those standards. It is out now through Satanath Records.

You know what you’re getting when you see the cover. Guttural growls, a dense chugging low end not unlike early Devourment, and full of horrifying samples to really get the violence and sickness of the music across. Each big slow riff bleeds with the influence of Bolt Thrower and Immolation, packed with an uncomfortable level of swaying misery, while there is plenty of grinding speed (”) when required. A personal highlight for me, ‘Redemption (Believe in Yourself)’, is chunky fucking death and carnage and is just what the doctor ordered. There are a couple of quieter interludey moments, but generally it is just balls to the wall brutal death riffs and incomprehensible growls.

‘From Sin to Redemption’ is a record to put on when you want your brain pummelled into mush and nothing else. Expertly one dimensional, the brutality on display is fearsome and Degragore should be applauded for their dedication. Not every record needs to be overly complex and inventive. Sometimes you just need this, and Degragore do it superbly.

Neter - Inferus

Spanish death metallers Neter are back with a new record full of death metal brutality and glory. ‘Inferus’ follows their great debut ‘Idols’ from 2015, and is out now through Satanath Records.

Opening with a delicate piano intro ‘The Cords of Sheol’, the beast is awakened with the ominous thrust of ‘Faceless’, a track of immense weight that takes a measured pace and brings to mind ‘Demigod’-era Behemoth. There is a wonderful depth to the songwriting here; it doesn’t just feel like a collection of cool riffs and brutal vocals, it feels like a coherent journey throughout a cohesive whole. Neter take influence from American and European death, leaving the chainsaw frozen north alone which is a welcome change at the moment. It seems that everyone has gone all Swedish, so this is a great thing! The production is warm and thick, like cloying blood, wrapping the ferocity of songs like ‘Blazing Fallout’ and ‘Galvanize’ in a smothering embrace.

‘Inferus’ is a superb album. It feels like a regal overlord of the more flailing and savage records of this year, carrying gravitas and weight rather than simple minded savagery. Neter’s work is remarkably mature and deep, and this record shows their flair for the grandiose and density. Excellent.

Utburd - The Horrors Untold

Man, Russia must be a dark, grim and depressing place to live, if the high quality of miserable black metal that snakes its way out of the country is anything to go by. Utburd, a one man bleak atmospheric black metal project, has released ‘The Horrors Untold’ earlier this year through Satanath Records, and it is a mesmerising plunge into the darkest parts of the great, grim north.

Opener ‘Rise of Dagon’ begins with glacial guitar that steadily bleeds into a weeping ooze of traditional black metal. ‘The Horrors Untold’ has a lot more narrative running through it than a lot of depressive/atmospheric black metal, like the creepy ‘Mystery of Joseph Karven’ or the coldness of ‘Death from Mount Tempest’. It isn’t just waves of riffing without structure, it manouevres deftly between scowling second wave and a grasp of the atonal, the off kilter. The title track is a looming beast of gloom and bleak darkness, swamped in ethereal atmospherics but with a satisfying heft to it.

Utburd’s black metal is definitely depressive and atmospheric but it doesn’t fall into the tedious, monotonous traps that many of this genre can. There is plenty of variety, cool riffing and a plethora of melancholic melody lines to get lost in. ‘He, Who Paints in Red’ is the best example from a record that shimmers with glacial fury.

Evil Nerfal - Bellum Est Pater Omnium

Columbian black metallers Evil Nerfal’s second record ‘Bellum Est Pater Omnium’ is another Satanath release from early this year, and it is a torrent of raging, Satanic black metal that revels in its raging, magnificent evil. It is available right now, and is for fans of Darkthrone, Behemoth and Marduk.

The grand, classical intro builds the drama for the subtly titled ‘Fuck Off Jesus Christ’, which pours like magma from the speakers in scorching throes. Unlike a lot of South American black metal, Evil Nerfal doesn’t go for the ultra-necro, lo-fi approach. Instead, the likes of ‘In Endless Torment’ and the mesmerising fury of ‘En Las Fauces del Demonio’ paint with a denser, thicker palette. Much more in common with the likes of Behemoth than Beherit, ‘Bellum Est Pater Omnium’ is a mature, multi faceted record of black metal at its most majestic and its most severe. In fact, the track you’d expect to be the most straightforward, necrotic monster ‘Satanic Madness Black Metal Unleashed’ is in fact probably the most flamboyant in character, with wonderful melodies flowing from blackened frets and an enticing atmosphere.

Unholy melodies and unhuman growls dance upon a roiling sea of vicious black metal, miasmic and darkly imperial. Evil Nerfal’s music is a beautiful symphony of fire and fury, and ‘Bellum Est Pater Omnium’ is an arcane conjuring of the grandest of the necro spirits. Totally essential listening.

Inhibitions - La Danse Macabre

Greek symphonic black metallers Inhibitions dropped their second album at the start of the year through Satanath Records, and ‘La Danse Macabre’ is a grand follow up to their 2016 debut ‘Flames of Desolation’. This is definitely for fans of Dimmu Borgir, but also Dark Funeral and Burzum.

‘The Calling’ links forlorn piano work into a blasting inferno, while the intricately structured ‘Toxic Rain’ builds through acoustic guitar and keyboard into towering tremolo riffing and a snarling, scowling vocal. Inhibitions tend more towards the symphonic elements being a little more subtle throughout, never bludgeoning you with strings etc. There is indeed, ‘No Escape’ from a traditionalist set of roots for Inhibitions, the very pure core of black metal on full display here, merely enhanced by the addition of symphonic elements, rather than being ruled by it. The dark, crawling ‘Religion of Peace’ is my own personal highlight, as the sheer evil oozing from each shambling riff is magical.

Lacking the grandiosity of a Dimmu, or a Cradle, Inhibitions rely instead on the subtle merging of keyboards into their orthodox black metal assault, and it works really well. Each track is enhanced by the odd detour into more esoteric territory, but none are ruled by it alone. That helps ‘La Danse Macabre’ really stand up from the blackened hordes of samey, corpsepainted goons to show another great side to this genre.

From the Vastland - Blackhearts

Sometimes material I get for review disappears into my folder and my iTunes and I lose it for years. Then I find it again on shuffle and think wow, what I missed the first time. From the Vastland’s ‘Blackhearts’ EP is one of those, from 2015 through Satanath Records. It is an intense slab of powerful black metal, and worth seeking out all these years later.

‘Astoyhad’ starts with a slow, deliberate riff leaden with dark atmospheres before charging off with poisonous intent. A howling, frostbitten chainsaw through your heart, this Iranian one man effort weaves gloom throughout this piece. Iranian black metal; what strange worlds we live in. As orthodox Scandinavian as it comes, From the Vastland don’t try to be different because of their locale, but pay homage to the vast frozen north with the icy ferocity of the title track and the cold majesty of ‘Abakhtaran’.

I need to scour deeper into this vast catalogue and see what else I can find, because if there are more hidden gems of this quality they deserve the coverage! From the Vastland is blackhearted indeed, and this EP captures them at an icy and relentless highpoint.

Taiga - Cosmos

Russian black metallers Taiga’s newest record ‘Cosmos’ is another piece of the cryptic and bleak Russian black metal puzzle. Russia is a country that constantly cranks out bands of a high quality in various genres, but never seems to get the credit it deserves. ‘Cosmos’ is out now of Symbol of Domination Productions.

This is bleak, depressive black metal at it’s best,with ghostly keyboards accompanying the fiery riffing and the gloomy atmospheres. It often switches between a slower pace where the almost suicidal atmosphere is suffocating to the blasting, white hot setpieces that howl and shriek at the stars above. This dichotomy is what makes Taiga interesting to me; coupling not only the firebrand speed and rage of pure black metal but the weeping, shrieking loneliness of atmospheric black as well. Tracks like ‘Космос’ have an almost uplifting quality to them, when soaring melody drags the misery into the bright lights of day.

There’s definitely plenty of heart wrenching melancholy floating through this record, but Taiga’s grasp on the cold, desperation of life is masterful. ‘Cosmos’ builds itself within a cocoon of solitude, of darkness and of misery. Piercing through with sobbing screams, you still cannot fathom the depths of despair lurking here. Turn it on, turn it up and drift away forever…

South America. Columbia to be more precise, and a blackened death metal band called Bestialized. So you can feel what you’re about to experience, before you press play. This is the band’s third record of uncompromising, unhinged savagery, and it is out now on Satanath Records. If you’re into Impiety or early Krisiun, these guys are for you.

The gloomy melody that emerges from murmering insanity in ‘Harvest Throes’ immediately explodes into fiery carnage in ‘Hell’s Gateway Abattoire’, which is chock full of clattering blasting, rusted scythe riffs and a throat shredding vocal. But Bestialized aren’t just short, sharp shocks. Their songs are longer than average for this style, and it isn’t a gimmick; the music is always vital and energetic. Imagine if Slayer had been from Bogota, not California, and you can imagine the kind of top notch songwriting here.

I particularly enjoy the mayhem and slower sections of the excellent ‘Everlasting Mark of Uroborus’, and the brilliantly titled ‘Cosmic War Maggot’ that thrashes like someone set it on fire. Their aesthetic may be black, but Bestialized are rampant death/thrash at its finest. Sounding quintessentially South American (no bad thing), but yet with enough of an identity and a maturity to stick out from the more primitive crowd, Bestialized are fucking great.

Another day, another new gem unearthed by the high quality folks at Satanath Records. This time it is Ecuadorian death metallers Epidemia, whose ‘Leprocomio’ album is a scintillating ride through some of death metal’s greatest and goriest hits. Powerful riffs, brutal vocals and an all round nastiness pervades this half hour of death!

Almost any death metal fan will find something here to enjoy. Be it the groaning Immolation worship of the title track to the ferocious Deicide-isms of ‘Redencion del Engendro’, Epidemia keep you coming back for more. The insistent, Swedeath worship that bleeds from the riffs is excellent, as is the old school vibe that every song has. The opening riff to ‘Agonistes en el Inframundo’ is one of the downright heaviest pieces of business you’ll hear this year, and the grinding, Suffocation groove that accompanies the rest of that track is heartburstingly brilliant.

You need well written, excellently executed death metal with guts, gore and massive riffs? Then Epidemia are for you. ‘Leprocomio’ is one of the most assured death metal records of 2016; one I’ve come back to numerous times for the strength of its songwriting and its powerful riffage. I love this fucking record, and there’s no shame to it!