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Resonance - Pestilential Shadows - Dwarrowdelf

Pestilential Shadows – Devils Hammer                               9/10

Australian Black metal royalty Pestilential Shadows return with their seventh full-length offering. The utterly unforgiving Devils Hammer, featuring a rejuvenated lineup that is in symbiosis with the band’s unrelenting musical intensity.

From the opening of the title track and its frantic riffing coupled with constant blast attack, Devils Hammer is dense thick and completely unforgiving. There is a complexity to the riffing that is layered and when a respite is offered, as on ‘’ Scaphism’ it is brief dripping in atmosphere and a presence that is immediately identifiable. ‘’Bitter Cross’ may start with a slower atmosphere, yet it is thicker, its anger palatable, the vocals of Balaam visceral, unrepentant. The double kicks add to the inexorable openly hostile intent, it is the march of conflict and creativity matched by the guitar work of Krvna Vatra and Mourn.

Purely an onslaught of an album ‘’ Despot of Cathartic Vigor’’ never lets up for its five minutes, it is continual assault of driving rhythms and dynamics, never stagnant, a restless angry soul that is complemented by the pure metal fury that is ‘’ Tears of The Scythe’’ and the mid-tempo fury of ’Jackal”.  Being able to create music firmly rooted in tradition with modern complexity, Pestilential Shadows coalesce black metal in its honest state into a malevolent force of nature driven by sheer force of will and intensity.

Devils Hammer is an album that revels in its savagery and its complexity. It is pure Pestilential shadows and Black metal that is openly hostile to its environment. Demanding and remorseless Devils Hammer is highly recommended!


Dwarrowdelf - The Fallen Leaves                            8.5/10


Tom O’Dell Dwarrowdelf its name originating from the Tolkien universe as the Westron name for Moria or Khazad-dûm, the bridge of Khazad-dûm. The Fallen Leaves is the fifth full-length  offering of Epic cinematic black metal.

Being uneducated in the lore of Tolkien, The Fallen Leaves moves away from the initial source material yet is an atmospheric synth laden, at times symphonic offering, that has beautiful melodies punctuated by the blackest of moments. From its inception with the key laden opening of Within the Ashes, The Ember Still Burns’ and its melody that heralds the arrival of A Journey to Dawn’ ’it is evidently conceptual, using a strong melodic death metal component as well to give the music the texture it demands. ‘This Shattered World’ is another excellent example the death metal leanings merging with the symphonic black metal. There are huge swathes of power metal through out to add to that cinematic feeling. The whole feeling is to be huge for fans of the project it is to be expected, the overall feeling of the album is uplifting, yet it is tinge with sinister moments and lurking shadows adding drama and scale. ‘’ To Dust We All, Return’’ has one of those massive riffs that is unmissable.

The Fallen Leaves is a majestic grandiose offering that highlights the incredible musicianship of Dwarrowdelf and its creator. The production up to the task of the scale of the tales within. Some of the Harmonies between the guitar and keyboard lines are simply stunning as on the excellent ‘’ Deliverance’’ and the power metal gives a great sense of dynamics against its colder blacker moments. Dwarrowdelf have delivered something creative, inventive, and truly exciting.

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