Resonance- Denouncement Pyre - Thromdarr - After Evolution - Regnant -Putricid - Downcross
Denouncement Pyre – Forever Burning 9/10
Horrifying the masses with barbarism, darkness, and vitriolic hate. Melbourne’s Denouncement Pyre unleash Forever Burning their fourth release of contempt to the masses.
Forever Burning is furious, muscular, and foregoes a lot of the atmosphere that was on their last record. the exception is “Sunder the Living Temple” not a respite but a welcome change to their all-out extreme metal assault. Representing “A homage to the triumph and tribulations of those who walk the path of fire.” The result is savage fierce and uncompromising. The blackened death metal is peppered by moments of thrashened chaos that are purely Australian. Unflinching, uncaring, and tough.
The rhythms are fast and raw, whilst the riffing is pinpoint with its razor-like attack, the constant energy is filtered through the raw vocals of D, a celebration of freedom and power “Burn This World and Start Again” is epic whilst ‘Tongues Stretched for Salvation’ is a pure underground extreme metal that is celebratory, chaotic, and pure Denouncement Pyre.
“Forever Burning ‘’ is pure metal whilst ‘’ Hung Like Swine’’ drips with evil intent. Forever Burning will leave you numb and damaged after experiencing it. It is a record of no half measures that is part Black, Death, and Thrash yet purely metal. Unwavering in its intensity and ability to deliver determined extreme music for those who revel in it. Recommended.
Thromdarr – Midwinter Frost – Complete Demo Tapes 1990-1997 8.5/10
Finland’s Thromdarr was there at the beginning of the Black Metal phenomenon that swept Europe in the early 1990s. A band that released only 2 full-length albums in their career (so far) this exhaustive release follows their musical path up to the release of their debut album NorthStorm Arrives.
The two-disc set follows their early thrash death metal style leanings with lots of Celtic Frost, Death Sodom, and their early death grind style roots before finding their own style as a raw Black metal act. Midwinter Frost is in reverse order, so their earliest stuff is last, and it is gloriously rough. Real single mic demo type rough, left in their original condition without any technological advances. ‘’Consume the Lifeless Cadaver’ and ‘’ The Taste of Formaldehyde’’ are pure death-grind-inspired works but things quickly evolve into a more brutal direction. It is raw power and yet not without some vast soundscapes, clean vocals, and playing ‘’ Forest of the Black Diamonds’’, ‘’Winter of Flames’’ and ‘’Rainbow in a Red Desert’’ are excellent examples of their evolving style that grew from simple gore and satanism to the ever-evolving themes of darkness and nature.
Midwinter Frost is not perfect, and it’s not supposed to be. It does represent the band beautifully and is more enjoyed in the original way things were done. Lots of inspirational jamming that turned into recordings, some of the excellent along with a cold beer or two and it encapsulates the rapid change of the extreme music scene that took place in the early nineties and the power of raw Black Metal.
After Evolution – War of The Worlds 9/10
Czechia’s After Evolution delivered their second full-length album. War Of the Worlds, is not an HG Wells Homage but their own dystopian interpretation delivered with symphonic gothic power.
Nickolette Olsson’s vocals soar and are the perfect vehicle for delivering the tale. Powerful, hypnotic yet not without an earthen edge at times reminiscent of Evanescence in being able to convey the loss of emotion and fear in the tale. Final Hope ups the stakes towards the climax and the beautiful vocals are accentuated by some wonderful Celtic inclusions and that old-world authenticity.
Musically this is a powerful symphonic metal that hits all the expected moments yet adds some subtlety and some brutal moments too ‘’ Infinity Flames’’ touches on this whilst ‘’Cursed “is a beautiful slower somber moment that excels in its simplicity.
‘Librum Fortitude’’ is pure symphonic metal energy with some excellent classical touches whilst closer “The Victory’’ is the rousing zenith to the album, an orchestral composition of unconditional creativity that is uplifting yet tinged with sadness.
After Evolution delivers a classy confident inspired album that is pure 21st century, the energy of ‘’In the Chains” is a testament to their ability to merge the eleven components of the story thematically, cinematically, and full of rousing power metal. War Of The Worlds is diverse, entertaining beautifully delivered, and excellently written. A must for those who love the genre.
Regnant – Transvisceral 8.5/10
Awakening Records have done it again. This is a luscious re-issue of filthy death grind Stalwarts Regnant. The Chileans may have reformed in recent times, but this is a glorious re-issue of their 1997 debut album that also contains their 1995 demo “Eyes of Suffering” plus some bonus tracks.
Regnant is pure death metal with flourishes of thrash and that original grinding guitar sound. The result is tough immediate and visceral. Their power lies in the simplicity of their arrangements and the ferocity of their delivery ‘’ Evolutive Error’’ the short sharp “En Coma” and ‘’The Rape” capture their immediate, intense style from pounding double kicks and harsh vitriolic vocals to the guitar that shreds like razors across the skin. Its hateful yet memorable as on ‘’Deprived’’ and surprising as the 1 minute plus of “’ source of Suffering’’ delivers some tempo-inspired madness.
Pure death metal for those who love the music for its velocity, upfront attack, and passion for pure death with subject matter dripping in gore and horror. ‘’Transvisceral’’ may have been overlooked on its debut but it holds its own, sounding remarkably fresh and undated. Whilst its influences are evident some of this is so good it demands repeated listens with a demented grin.
With the biography and excellent photos, liner notes this presentation of the early days of the band this re-issue is excellent and allows their gory darkness to live on!
Putricid – Suppuration 8.5/10
Named after a bacterial infection that literally causes lesions on the brain Quebec’s Putricid (that originally began as Putrefacted Cadaver) has had its demos resurface in an excellent single release.
1990’s Putrified Cadaver and 1992’s Suppuration are here in all their ugly glory. This is pure first-wave death metal with guitar solos that pierce the eardrums, rhythms that go from slow to energetic speed, and the inhumane sounds that emerge from Jean-Roti. This is malevolent, honest music devoted to its ideology of inhumane music with gore-splattered principles.
Forming in 1989 the sound is raw primal and has that demo energy without the unnecessary polish, ‘’Doxologie’’ also included as a re-recording in 2021, and probably the most demented ‘’hymn’’ you will ever hear, ‘’ Suppuration’’ and ‘’ Saprophagy’’ are all outstanding representations of a movement that began as being the heaviest, insane form of music possible, the time changes and kicks, those crazy solos and the attitude. From the opening scream of ‘’Fatal Incantation’’, this is pure death metal with utter commitment, the slow parts designed for maximum head movement and carnage.
Glorious old school Death metal delivered with utterly guttural vocals Putricid gets the Awakening records treatment of being fully remastered, suitably horrific new artwork, and the full biography treatment, necessary for the fan of the dedicated to the underground and the honest brutality that comes with it.
Downcross – Hexapoda Triumph 8.5/10
Belarus duo Downcross has been combining the elements of unholy black metal with rock n roll since their demo in 2015, Hexapoda Triumph is more than just a rock n roll homage to the horned one.
Taking traditional ideas and song structures Downcross has infused their music with tonnes of great riffs and blinding speed. Invariant Fall of the Doomed could be a traditional rock number before the tremolo kicks in and the blast beats whilst never losing its direction and large groove element. This Is Black n roll that is definitely not for the masses.
The opening riff to Verity is Mirrored by Madness is pure black metal with the dynamics on point building to speed and a great midsection before more chaos. The songwriting is inspired, and left-field choices feel fresh and original. Trumpets Salute the Demise of Death is a true highlight with its warped riffs and more of Ldzmr excellent raw primal vocals. First, if Hubris takes the music and slow it with just a touch to let some more of those great riffs bleed all over you before upping the tempo, with another great tremolo riff that is full of fury. Bookended by some excellent dark almost ambient electronica that lures you into their world as on Hypnosuggestion, there are many complexities to enjoy on repeated listens
In the way, the way that metal and punk were seamlessly merged by the chosen few Downcross has accomplished the same with Hexapoda Triumph. It is an eminently immediate album that pummels the senses whilst being memorable and completely true to itself. It’s visceral, enthralling, and highly recommend.