Kingdom of Cadavers is one of those releases which takes time to make its fullest persuasion though not from being a slow burner of a tempter but as one which needs extra attention to absorb the most potent elements of its persuasion. The four track EP from Finnish death metallers Spiritual Holocaust once given the opportunity and time to work its sadistic charms though emerges as a strikingly promising and satisfying confrontation. It does not come with the intent to create new boundaries for the genre but sculpts a web of intrigue and raw destructive potency through its death driven slabs of intensity which captivates the imagination and transforms initial appreciation into a more impacting response.
Hailing from Raahe and formed in the latter part of 2010 out of the ashes of death/thrash metal band Point Blank, Spiritual Holocaust soon built a strong local fanbase which was strengthen by the release of demo CD Salute the Death last December. The end of the year also saw the new line-up of band founders vocalist Tomi Vähäkangas, guitarists Janne Satokangas and Jaakko Ulanto, bassist Marko Launen, and newest member Ville Yypäanaho in place and contemplating on their debut EP Kingdom Of Cadavers. Released by Grindhouse Music the new release unleashes a consumption of old school death metal which without being distinctly different to the sound and flavours bred by inspirations such as Morbid Angel, Bloodbath, Grave, and Cannibal Corpse, stands aside of the majority of other genre origin fuelled bands. Add in thoughts of the likes of Bolt Thrower and Suffocation to spice up the mix and you get a good idea of where Spiritual Holocaust come from and are going with their own individual design carving out the narrative.
The EP stirs from within a sampled bloodbath of torment, guitars and bass awakening their venomous intimidation to emerge as a pestilence of sonic toxicity and rhythmic stalking. Once into full malevolent flow Forgotten Horror crowds the ear and forces its venomous temptation upon the senses with accomplished rabidity and intensive might. It is not startling or structurally spellbinding but with a rawness which corrodes with every note and a serpentine breath that is magnetically suffocating, the track makes a compelling introduction; especially when it parades a ridiculously contagious acidic groove, a temptation which niggles and scores the senses until it is a lingering ingrained toxin.
The title track is like an aural plague from its first insidious note, its tsunami of attractive poison and melodically fouled intensity a smothering cloak of dark destruction around a skeleton of rhythmic bone which equally takes no prisoners. Once more irresistible grooves make their plea from within the thick swamp of malicious virulence though it is a greater intensive blanket compared to the first song. A lumbering brutality with a predacious spite to its gait, the track takes the strong opener of the EP up another level and enriches the already spawned open promise of band and sound.
From the apocalyptic landscapes of the previous pair Born of Hatred seems a more personal or certainly is centred on the more personal side of human nature, its sounds as reflectively provocative and internally baleful as the lyrical growling. There is no softening of the destructive essence and hate seeded air of the encounter though, it’s testing and twisted engagement no less a torrential animosity than the other trio of tenebrous tempests as shown by the closing Death is Alive. Gnawing upon and devouring every last gasp of the senses and spark of imagination, the track takes them on a ruinous tirade of sonic and rhythmic annihilation which in turn ignites the same entombed aspects of the listener. With riffs and grooves veining the assault and bass as ever providing the strongest predatory provocateur whilst the vocals in league with the sounds scowl and turn air into a vitriolic Cimmerian expanse, the song brings an equally sepulchral release to an enjoyable close.
As mentioned Kingdom of Cadavers is not grinding out or exploring new ventures but is pure old school death metal which leaves the senses and appetite fully satisfied. Spiritual Holocaust is a band, on the evidence of their first EP, at the beginning of what looks like being an eventful and fulfilling blood drenched journey.
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