Embers And Revelations is the first album on Relapse Records from Canadian death metallers Weapon and a release which with its seeds fully bloomed in old school sounds, is a refreshing and impressive slab of blackened glory. It is a blistering piece of enterprising and accomplished punishment which captures the imagination with ease.
Weapon has already made the world of blackened death metal take notice with debut Drakonian Paradigm of 2009 and its successor From the Devil’s Tomb the year after, but it will be Embers And Revelations which sets them as one of the most exciting bands to emerge in recent years, its evolution in sound and craft notable and impressive. Led and formed by Bangladeshi vocalist/guitarist Vetis Monarch the band has found its full voice musically and creatively and set free one of the best genre albums of the year. Its old school breath reminds of Morbid Angel, Immortal and Mayhem but with its distinct Eastern essences the album offers something different and inspiring.
The release opens with First Witnesses of Lucifer, its distant ominous stirring evolving into a larger shifting of muscle and jabbing riffs speared by fine vocals from Monarch. Into its stride it is a stroll of feisty riffs and roving guitar melodies keen in their endeavour but reserved in attack. The track soon lets its intensity off the leash and becomes a furious onslaught though it still holds back venom and unbridled aggression. The guitars of Monarch and Rom Surtr explore the senses with skill and craft, the sonic enterprise at ease with the abrasive riffs, whilst the rhythms of drummer The Disciple and the bruising basslines of Kha Tumos add depth and intimidation.
It is a strong start but soon exceeded and left in the shade by firstly Vanguard of the Morning Star to be followed by Crepuscular Swamp, Unhinged Swine and Liber Lilith. The first is bursting with vehemence and oppressive shadows, a track as venomous as it is inventive and mesmerising, those Eastern spices flavouring its rich blackened stock and devouring breath. It is a track which the more you delve into its presence the stronger it becomes, turning from an impressive companion into a feverishly essential one. The second of the three is a consumptive slice of well structured and insatiable passion, an engaging, steadily senses chewing tempest which raises its heat and fury the nearer to its climax it moves, the riffs and sonic meandering quite dazzling.
Liber Lilith is just glorious, a track which starts as a storm of less defined textures than on previous songs but with a bruising mass ripped by partly submerged addictive grooves and senses wilting sonics. Into its later half the track forges anthemic shouts into its pulsating flank and hypnotic weaves of guitar alongside the ever impressive beats and skills of The Disciple. A song to leave the whole body resonating, it is a bestial treat.
Emerging from Grotesque Carven Portal, an instrumental furnace, the title track rampages and storms the barricades with tumultuous energy and squealing intensity generated from the guitars and driven by pummelling rhythms and the guttural throat expulsions of Monarch, whose tones accentuate the passion and intent of the tracks as effectively as the music. Lyrically like all songs it is a challenge due to the low abrasive unrefined growls but not an issue to deflect from the obvious heart of the songs.
Completed by the disturbingly contagious and deeply intrusive Disavowing Each in Aum and the dirge majesty of Shahenshah, the album is a full and inventive beast with numerous facets to its attack brought with a perpetual imagination ensuring only intrigue, quality, and satisfaction.
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