Released on vinyl in the September of last year and now receiving its CD unleashing through Hellthrasher Productions, the self-titled debut from Greek black metallers Heretic Cult Redeemer is a deviously compelling slab of extreme niggling provocation definitely deserving wider attention. Maybe not quite a pestilence to create new realms within the genre, the blackened insidiousness masking as an album impressively accosts and lights the imagination with a tortuous intent and compelling craft to only invite keen admiration.
Formed in 2009 and consisting of members rich in experience from playing in the likes of Acrimonious, Necrovorous, and Embrace of Thorns, the Athens quartet has created a deep and rich expanse of cavernous atmospheres and uncompromising exploration in their sound which in turn makes their first release an equally invasive and cosmically questioning experience. Consisting of seven tracks which show predictability a cold shoulder and leaves the senses stretched and basking in an intrusive sonic weave of old school seeded black metal invention cast with a death metal vitriol, the release is a thought provoking physical confrontation which leaves an impressive and lasting impact.
Opener Crawling Hope is as you imagine a relatively slow moving stalking beast of an incitement forged on careering rhythms and acidic and erosive sonic consumption. Overwhelming yet addictively persuasive, the track once joined by rasping toxic vocals lurches over and suffocates the senses whilst all the time placing tempting grooves and incendiary twists of ideas before their gaze to deflect from the malevolence washing their hopes. It is a magnetic mix in a song which from gnawing and poisoning the atmosphere can swing its vicious hips in a groove sculpted dance of temptation with assured ease.
The following Bleeding of the Giant Sun is bred from the same creative seed, its gait and intent akin to its predecessor and forged in a web of lure of dark virulent grooves and destructive intrusive intensity. Rhythmically the track is less aggressive but still uncages charges of rapacious testing to create seize the ears for the pestilential vocal delivery and lyrical spite to work its charm over. Like the first it is an absorbing and incredibly addictive proposition if also uncomfortable at times in its rabid causticity, a trait used to great extensive effect by The Oldest of Times. Over nine minutes of insatiable noxious imagination and sonic abrasiveness draped in a melodic poison, the track is a wonderfully meandering and spellbinding exploit which is unrelenting in its sonic irritancy and smothering resourcefulness. Possibly overlong going by the urge to check out what came next about seven minutes or so in, which is always a sign, the track is an enthralling evocation of thoughts and emotions with textures and depths which offer something new with each encounter.
The strong and serpentine envenomed if underwhelming Concatenation comes next, though it may be its less potent presence just comes from being sandwiched between the epic previous pestilential embrace and the following triumphant assault of Destiny of Death. A galloping fury of acerbic riffing and rhythmic combativeness, the second of the two is a virulent contagion of hunger fuelled grooves and thumping beats which aligned to equally addictive and maliciously honed melodies romps and harangues the passions with a carnivorous and masterful persuasion. The tallest peak on the album the track is soon challenged for top honours by Unknown Salvation. A Middle Eastern chant accompanies a similarly acclimatised melodic coaxing within a formidable and oppressive dark intensity as the bass and guitars create their startling and intimidating design to the song. The challenge feverishly menaces and beguiles, its body spewing a pathogenic sonic cancer and ambience over the senses. It is a hard task master without the bait and hooks of its predecessor but just as lingeringly effective.
Επτά brings the release to a close with another quite scintillating and infectious tempest of baneful imagination and explosively infectious invention. It completes a demanding but mesmeric, dangerous and most welcome sonic scourge which suggests that Heretic Cult Redeemer is a band with the potential to help shape the course of extreme metal ahead. Not a classic but well on the way, this is the time to check out a very promising and exciting pestilence.
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