Isvind – Gud

Isvind_bandpic_RingMasterReview

Formed in 1992, Norwegian black metallers Isvind quickly made a potent impression on the underground scene, forcibly nudging acclaim along the way with their opening releases. It is fair to say though that it is from their return in 2011, that the band has really reaped the rewards for their creatively imposing and inventive sound and releases. New album Gud continues that progression with a mighty and impressive presence equipped with a blistering tempest of sound fuelling atmospherically charged songs. It is a dramatic and ravenous encounter full of surprises and uncompromising textures, and a release to push Isvind towards the strongest spotlight within the black metal scene.

As its potent predecessor Daumyra, the new album comes through Folter Records and features Isvind as a quartet for the first time. Alongside band founders, vocalists/guitarists Arak Draconiiz and Goblin, the Oslo band is completed by bassist Skævvtroll and drummer Slää, though Gud features Antichristian of Tsjuder who replaced Slää after he broke his arm just before the recording of the album. The encounter itself is a cold and harsh landscape of provocative sound and expression, and as mentioned a great unpredictability which turns strong tracks into fearsomely compelling encounters.

Gud instantly ignites the imagination with opener Flommen and indeed the song’s very first touch. Angelic harmonies fill and seduce the air, their beauty mesmeric yet with a tinge of the siren about them which is realised once guitars and rhythms erupt in controlled but fiery style. There is instantly more of a ravenous maverick tone to the bass which quickly catches the ear and gives heavier darker depth to the increasingly sonically descriptive track. Eventually it pulls up, gathers its intent and surges with a torrent of magnetic riffs and hostile rhythms bound in magnetic guitar enterprise. The raw vocal squalls breathe discontent and venom but are superbly tempered by the returning angels across the increasingly rabid of the song. It is a masterful start to the album, a proposal seeded in the cold wastelands of old school black metal yet blowing with fresh creative winds.

Isvind - Gud - Artwork_RingMasterReview   The rich beginning continues with Ordet, grooves and hooks as ready to engage the senses as the barbarous onslaught of riffs and rhythms. It is a contagious mix, bursts of hostility taking seconds of captivating breath throughout as the guitars continue to relentlessly spin their more refined bait across the sonic and emotional ravishment. The track perpetually keeps attention gripped with every pestilential surge which in turn is disrupted by expectation defeating invention, a trait repeated across Gud and indeed following track Himmelen. Its air, as those before it, might suggest uncomfortable and stark landscapes but its uncompromising presence is a full on charge of musical and emotional rabidity, one uncaging brutality rather than ambient suggestiveness and just as riveting.

Dåren leaps in next with an irresistible rock ‘n’ roll swagger and an addictive grooming to its contagious presence, grooves and rhythms a tenacious temptation and violent shuffle respectively never missing a beat in stirring up body and passions of those it simultaneously and venomously violates. The track is outstanding, and only increases its persuasion when sonic and vocal strains of acidity and imagination spill their taunting bait across its insatiable trespass of the senses.

Both Tronen and Boken create their own striking and pleasure inflaming proposals, the first a malevolent fury which veins its caustic ravaging with melodic intrigue and tempting whilst the second is a bellow of raw musical antagonism also eager to share sharp and invention driven exploits. The guitar craft and imagination across both songs is almost bewitching, their ferocity a tasty and bracing abuse but certainly the sonic endeavour that springs often from nowhere, is the richest key to the track’s triumphs, as shown again within Giften. As the previous track, it too is rampant rancor in tone and presence launched from the darkest ruinous intent. The almost nagging unruly persistence which Isvind installs in a majority of their encounters through riffs and rhythms again just bullies and overwhelms welcoming ears here, their submission rewarded with a smug stroll of flirtatious grooves and swaggering beats.

The album is completed by firstly the mercilessly disorientating Hyrden with its bestial rhythms and cosmic ‘hallucinations’ within savagely oppressing sonic scenery, and lastly Spiret. The final song is as cold and unforgiving in sound and atmosphere as it is virulent in grooves and sparkling imagination, a union of extremes providing another mouth-watering peak within Gud.

Though not newcomers by a long way, Isvind probably has not quite breached the frontline of black metal’s attention. That should change once Gud is set free and brings the genre something rather exciting to chew on.

Gud is available from June 26th via Folter Records @ http://www.folter666shop.de/de/CD/CD-4/isvind—black-metal.html?XTCsid=6nikf1dgnjb2bd4u0e8a90uca1

https://www.facebook.com/Isvindband

RingMaster 25/06/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Hagl – Lenket til Livet

Hagl_band_picture_RingMasterReview

There is something bewitching about stark and expressionless landscapes, a chilling seduction which embraces the senses and enthrals the imagination. This also applies to cold and desolate aural terrains, especially those conjured by Norwegian black metallers Hagl on debut album Lenket til Livet. With masterful creative hues throughout, it is a ten track ravenous exploration of uncomfortable emotional and physical terrains, a captivation of ears and thoughts providing an hour of thickly satisfying provocation.

Featuring members of other Norwegian black metal exports in Beastcraft, Endezzma, and Vulture, Hagl’s sound basks in the seeds and original depths of their region’s black metal, infusing it with strains of modern resourcefulness and ideation. As shown by Lenket til Livet, the trio of Malphas (guitars, bass and mellotron), Sorath (vocals), and Gheist (drums) also delve into the darkest pestilential climates and ruthless depths of ruin, decay, and sound, dragging the listener with them. The album is a long term investment of time and attention it is fair to say, but with increasing rewards repaying the demanding effort.

The album opens with Askefast, its initial web of guitar and sonic tempting a cold, ruthless wind alone setting the terms and conditions of the impending crawl through ears and psyche. The raw monotone shaded tones of Sorath equally set the scene for his delivery and also the insidious nature of song and release. As harsh and abrasive as it all is, there is also a magnetic swim of melodic suggestiveness lurking in the ambience of the track, the guitars almost flirting with the imagination until stepping into clarity further into the song to expel fresh evocative expression.

Hagl - Lenket til Livet - Artwork_RingMasterReviewIt is a transfixing start matched by the more rigorous and savage Den Sorte Porten where rhythms and riffs immediately show more aggressive urgency and volatility. A lumbering stalking of the senses emerges eventually though, scythes of guitar and brutal rhythmic stabs lining the incitement before busying themselves again beneath the singularly gaited stroll of the vocals. The song continues to flit between both assaults, smothering all before with its ruinous touch before making way for the predatory and glacial trespass of Ulvehyrde which in turn gives the listener to Fra Kulden Til Flammene to consume. The first of the two reveals a great trail of sonic colouring, grooves which could just as much be bred in the barren realms of post punk as metal, whilst its successor from an enthralling and delicious acoustic serenade of guitar, spreads a melodically toxic tapestry courted by heavier and less dramatic but just as potent bass predation. The track is a gripping affair, the guitar of Malphas absolutely stealing the show but sizeably backed by the individual intimidations and threats of Sorath and Gheist for one of the major moments of the album.

   Helvete Ligger Så I Lende is a little less striking yet the melodic shimmers from the guitar within the relentless encroachment by its bitter and rancorous presence is almost sorcerous in its tempting, whilst Ondskapt brings its own blend of aural savagery and melodic beauty right after. There is a running similarity of sorts in the templates and sculpting of many tracks within Lenket til Livet, as shown again by this pair, but it matters little such the radiant lure and exploits shaping each track’s individual cancers. There is an additional undefined spark to the second of the two allowing it to shine out over others and the fruitless scenery cast by Liksøk right after it, another offering with plenty to entangle ears and appetite in such as the slow rabidity of the vocals and rhythms as well as almost intoxicating melodies.

Sjelefiende almost bounds along compared to the previous songs, its keen stroll an infectious enticement draped in tendrils of sonic suggestion and hate infested vocals, whilst Vardøgn drifts solemnly through its own emotional desolation littered with crystaline temptation. As all tracks there is much more going on within the intrusion, plenty to be discovered over time which ultimately only increases the success and impressiveness of Lenket til Livet too.

Closing with the corrosive weight and ferocity of Endelikt, a track in a constant evolution as bracing as it is inhospitable and as creative as it is overwhelmingly tempestuous, Lenket til Livet is an enthralling and punishingly enjoyable encounter. Though overall it did not ignite ears as to the same consistency as it might and as one of two other recent genre releases every listen brings something new and more persuasive, its stature only growing. Well worth a hearty checking out is the suggestion.

Lenket til Livet is available now via Folter Records @ http://folter666shop.de/

https://www.facebook.com/haglbyge

RingMaster 25/06/2015

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The Stone – Nekroza

The Stone - Nekroza - Artwork

Probably the best way to describe Nekroza, the new album from Serbian black metallers The Stone is pestilential beauty. It is a release which infest and corrupts the senses and psyche yet seduces with some of the most irresistible grooves and sonic enterprise likely to be heard this or any year. It is a riveting and thrilling encounter unafraid to bind the listener in virulent contagion whilst smothering them in toxic shadows and scarring malevolence. It also has a devilish swagger which spills venom with every swing and a radiant invention which is as predatory as it is bewitching, it all adding up to one rigorously compelling and exciting violation.

Hailing out of Belgrade, The Stone emerged in 1996 as Stone To Flesh and proceeded to release two demos, Serbian Woods and Killed by the Sun, which caught the ears and attention of the metal underground, especially when united for a re-release as Unveiled Evil in 1999. The following year saw debut album Some Wounds Bleed Forever unleashed and the subsequent change of name to simply The Stone. Continuing to make an increasingly noticeable mark through their live performances and following releases, the band really drew an international spotlight with fourth album Magla in 2006, their first for German label Folter Records. It was a trigger to tours and greater attention upon the band globally, acclaim and even stronger success coming with the albums Umro and Golet in 2009 and 2011 respectively. Now their seventh album Nekroza comes to push the band even further to the fore of world black metal whilst providing one of the best genre stirring incitements of 2014.

From the intrigue soaked intro of opener Kamenolom, there is an immediate drama and portentous breath to Nekroza which only expands and entices across song and album from thereon in. The first track’s start is epic and provocative, the readying of battle armour and antagonistic intent before a torrent of onrushing rhythms and raw riffs converge on the senses. It is a potent flood of sonic endeavour lorded over by the dirty caustic scowls of vocalist Nefas. Emerging grooves proceed to vein the wall of corrosive energy cast by guitarists Kozeljnik and Demonetras, their lure subdued yet gripping against the robust and creative rampage of beats from L.G. and bass predation from Usud. It is a hellacious proposition binding attention and appetite with ease before the following Kosmar begins an insatiable enslavement of the passions, its rhythmic hips and grooved flirtation seducing from the opening second. That bait leads into another sonic battlefield, an avalanche of malicious craft and hostile intensity combining before parting its waves for the returning enticement which started the song to infest ears and passions once again. As with all songs there is never a moment to rest and reflect; the intimidating pressure of sound and vocal maliciousness unrelenting though frequently penetrated by a stunning blaze of melodic invention and skill from the guitars to transfix the imagination.

Both Crno Zrno and Dani Crni flood ears and thoughts with their individual temptations, the first ravaging the senses with rapacious riffs and virulent grooves, the latter aspect simmering tenaciously without to provide a constant delicious nagging of ears. The song is like a maze, every turn a wall of rhythmic animosity and a blaze of sonic toxicity, all skilfully and venomously sculpted for a scintillating encounter whilst the second of the two is a darker vicious foraging of the senses but again equipped with masterful sonic bait and a volatile rhythmic battering. Nefas’ vocals are soaked in bile and enmity, his strong abrasing scowls an equal trigger and temper to the maelstrom of invention around him. Parading the narratives in his own native tongue does lead to the only very slight niggle, in that those of us of limited language skills cannot explore the lyrical side of the album, something normally not a problem but you feel you are really missing out with Nekroza.

     Lov na Vestice next explores the darkest depths of the album which were opened within the previous song but despite cloaking ears in another enthralling and intensive examination pierced by a glorious scorching melody bound solo, lacks some of the spark of its predecessors. Nevertheless it makes for a demanding and rewarding challenge before making way for Sunovrat, another resourcefully commanding and unpredictable onslaught but again one not quite flicking the switches as potently as other songs on Nekroza. The album’s compelling title track has no such issues. From its first swipe of ravenous riffs courted by a grouchy bassline, the track is a spellbinding and savage rush upon and for the senses. There is certain elegance to the melodic structure of the track and brutality to its intensive underbelly driven by the uncompromising rhythms of L.G. and the similarly merciless corrosiveness of the vocals. It is an engrossing proposition which drifts purposefully into an even heavier and darker landscape, not quite funereal in tone but definitely venturing into a doomy climate which is explored to weightier effect with Mrak. Imposing and pouring menace with every resonating note and grizzled syllable, the track stalks and crawls over the senses and imagination for a slower but eventually inescapable persuasion.

The album is completed by the outstanding Pesimizam, another groove fest spraying the most addictive sonic rancor and vocal bitterness to be found on the release, and lastly Predgroblje. The closer is awash with a grooved and melodic tempting which swerves and lures like an exotic temptress within an exhaustive and ravenous smog of sonic erosion. It is a masterful end to a thoroughly exciting and impressing album. The Stone might still be a secret to some of the metal world but Nekroza suggests that it will be not for much longer.

Nekroza is available from October 1st on Folter Records @ http://www.folter666shop.de/product_info.php?info=p6_the-stone–serbia—-nekroza–digicd.html&XTCsid=578ocl6tcjrd4j5j3fuan1t836

http://www.thestonehorde.com

RingMaster 01/10/2014

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The Committee – Power Through Unity

 

The-Committee_Band

    Originally a doom metal proposition, The Committee has added and woven in a black metal breath and guitar enterprise to a sound which has begun drawing in attention and fascination within the metal world. The release of debut album Power Through Unity, with its chilling drone sculpted soundscapes around an equally cold tongue which licks and lashes the senses with blackened malevolence and abrasing persuasion, is sure to push the band into a stronger potent spotlight. It is not a release to ignite the most ferocious of passions but one with a menacing magnetism and certain craft which like a siren constantly calls attention back into its pestilential body.

      Formed as a one man project in the winter of 2007 by vocalist/guitarist Igor Mortis, The Committee expanded into a quartet with the addition of guitarist Aristo Crassade, bassist Marc Abre, and drummer William Auruman before unveiling the four tracked Holodomor EP to strong interest amongst the metal underground and various internet sites and magazines. Based in Belgium with its members bred from roots set in Holland, France, Ukraine, and Russia, the band has a blend and mix within its fusion of black and doom which persistently captivates upon their first album. Released via Folter Records with songs themed by ‘history, occult manipulation of the mind and fascinating past events’, Power Through Unity is like an intensive ritual, a passage of rites to the heavy dark realms the band find their inspirations. Their motto says it all, “History is written by the victors, we are the voice of the dead”.

     Opener Not Our Revolution makes a reserved entrance; an applauding ambience alongside an intriguing single guitar enticesThe Committee - Power Through Unity - Artwork thoughts with decent potency before the drums call in the full slow scourge of sound, guitars and bass prowling the ears whilst vocal squalls roar from within the oppressive breath of the song. The lowly slung voice of the track drags its heart and intent deep into the imagination whilst an almost cavernous wall of riffs aided by sadistic rhythms cages and enthrals with a ruinous and deceptively varied persuasion. The track is as imposing as a tsunami but as patient as an ice age in its consumption of senses and emotions.

   The strong start and intrusion is followed and matched by The Man of Steel, another track which is in no rush to devour but working at that aim from its first seconds with ravenous riffs and antagonistic rhythms plaguing ears. The melodic and sonic invention of the guitars merges drone and repetition within their invasively hued narratives laying a coaxing which as the drums and bass compel and intimidates with predacious efficiency. The threatening squall of sound envelops every inch of the senses and like the first track is dramatically bewitching.

    It is probably fair to say that the tempestuous surface of songs carry a too similar a temptation across the release and needs a more intensive dive into the corruptive hum at times to discover their uniqueness, but the rewards are always waiting and in a track like By My Bare Hands offered in a more easily visible and digestible meal of caustic charm and icy toxicity. The Last Goodbye also casts out more open bait and like its predecessor opens on an intimate melodic touching of the imagination before being consumed by the brute force and intensity of a hungrily howling ravenous storm. The production of the album provides a little uncertainty in the appreciation of the release though, its touch at times smothering and defusing the underlying melodies and tempering elegance which ignites a song like this and the following Katherine’s Chant, but simultaneously its glacial feel fuels the bone-chilling temptation of the release which it is hard not to find a small passion for.

   Through the insatiably pungent ruin of Katherine’s Chant and the even more rabid air of the closing title track, its appetite and mordant atmosphere the most voracious and eager on the release, Power Through Unity leaves the senses on an acerbic high and rigorously satisfied. The EP lacks enough diversity to truly ignite the passions and to be fussy that production issue does dull too much of the release’s success and sound to build a formidable stature for The Committee, but there is plenty to be drawn to often and with keen relish creating a strong and exciting first introduction certainly for us to a fiercely promising proposition.

www.thecommitteecult.com

7.5/10

RingMaster 28/02/2014

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Unforgiving the black and raw: an interview with Thorns of Kult

Thorns Pictures by Blazing Visions

Pictures by Blazing Visions

It has been six years in the coming but the return of Italian black metallers Kult with their second album Unleashed From Dismal Light has equally regained and reinforced the band’s presence and reputation as one of the rawest essential old school black metal provocateurs and ignited another fervour of passion from fans and those new to the band. With a new vocalist on board, the Como quartet has uncaged a force of sonic causticity, vitriol, and rapacious malevolence which provides the healthiest depths of satisfaction in its victims. To learn more about Kult, their new album, the long time between releases and much more we had the pleasure to talk with drummer Thorns.

Hello and thanks for talking with us at the Ringmaster ReviewCould you start by telling us about the beginnings of Kult and the origins of its members?

Kult was born in 2002 with the only purpose of playing old school Black-Metal. The band released one demo tape, 2 albums and a split EP with The Stone so far. The band had some line-up problems during the years and also some problems with personal life that forced the member to stop activities for almost 3 years in the recent past. But actually I have to say we’re finally back to stay. The actual line up is composed by:  Kacele (guitars), D.White (bass), Tumulash (vocals) and me Thorns (drums).

You mentioned that purpose which came with the band has that intent changed or evolved over time?

Nope. Nothing has changed from the beginning actually. When the band was created the guys wanted to play old school and as you can listen on the new album after more than 10 year of existence, nothing has changed, and of course I can assure nothing will change in the future as well.

Your sound is bred in raw old school black metal as you say, what have been the influences over time which has seeded inspirations?

Well, as you can imagine we’ve grew up listening to raw music so our influences are actually from that. I’m the older guy of the band so I can speak from myself telling that Darkthrone, Burzum, Gorgoroth or early Immortal were my solid basis of my youth…but well I can also speak for the guys saying they loved hell bands like Armagedda, Craft or Gorgoroth as well…and we can definitely say we can hear that from our music!

kult_unleashedfromdismallight_cover (1)You have just released your strongly anticipated second album Unleashed From Dismal Light, how has it been received from those waiting appetites?

I have to say that I never expected such a great “welcome back!” As I told before, the band had to stop for 3 long years and you know…a lot of people usually forget what it was so I truly believed a lot of people forgot about us…but I have to say I was wrong. A lot of people wrote us back saying they were happy to see we were still alive and kicking with a new album out. This was awesome for us…these kinds of things give you more energy and determination to go ahead stronger than before.

It has between six years between Unleashed From Dismal Light and debut album Winds Of War; you touched on it earlier but can you elaborate on the reasons for the long stretch of time?

Life sucks man…some of us got into some troubles with jobs, other personal issues about family…and also consider we’re not living so close (me and the other guys around 400km) so it is not easy all the time to get the right mood and be strong enough to “survive”. Sometimes you just need a break because it is too much. This is what basically happened within the band…but as you can see after all those problems were solved, the band rises back from the ashes with renewed energy and strength.

We suggested the album was not concerned in breaking down boundaries for black metal but concentrating on giving it a new and fresher toxicity and sonic pestilence to get excited about; a fair comment?

Not sure to understand exactly what you mean…but by my side I can surely tell that this new album is more powerful and direct than the first one…but if you listen carefully the music is also slower than the early composition. We actually focused on the songs, not asking ourselves what people would expect from us after a so long break. We could release a killer high speed album to get people some fresh meat to grind but we preferred going ahead completely true with ourselves, following our hearts. Mostly of the new songs are mid tempos or slow and the mood is more heavy and “pestilential” I would say. This is pure bone-breaking music, no bullshit! There are many bands out there playing fast…we’re not in the same race; we’re not looking for some medals! We’re not interested in competitions!! Do you want to get sick? Do you want to get mad? Do you want to get pain in the neck? “Unleashed From Dismal Light” might be what you’re looking for. Give it a try.

How has the creation and recording of Unleashed From Dismal Light compared to its predecessor and how would you say your sound and songwriting has evolved between the pair?

Well, to tell you the truth this album, except for some lyrics, is 3 years old. I mean we already composed it back in 2010 when we had the break. Everything was ready to be recorded shortly after but well, you already know the story. So basically I can say there is not much difference between the 2 albums except for the fact that on the second one it’s me on drums, and on the first one they had another drummer. Technically I can say the new one is more tight and powerful but musically I feel not much difference. Probably we could start noticing some years passed on new compositions but I can tell nothing about it right now.

What is the writing process with Kult?

Probably nothing exciting: the guitar player show the other guys some riffs and all of the band starts working on it. Average band modus operandi.

kult pictures by Luneth Vinönen

pictures by Luneth Vinönen

We already knew, knowing before his vocals style, that the album would have sounded completely different so we gave him the complete freedom to express himself the way he liked the most. We are friends since a long time ago so when we asked him to join the band we already had some kind of common vision of how the album should have sounded. We also downtuned the guitars/bass to give it the general mood. To be honest everything went better than expected ’cause I had an idea about the final result that Tumulash completely burned to the ground ‘cause he sung in a completely different and new way I didn’t expect from him. So yeah, today I’m more and more confident about the decision to take him on board.

Please give us some insight into the recording of the album and its raw unforgiving sound, was it as it hints at done as a live recording to achieve the rich merciless sound?

We didn’t want to record the new album in a proper studio this time…we wanted a raw approach that only someone who knows what we’re talking about can give it. So we recorded it in our rehearsal room (Beastcave Studios) with the precious help of a friend of mine that is a talented black-metal musician and sound engineer. We used our equipment and all the things we usually have in the dark room, so even if all instruments have been recorded separately like in a normal professional studio, the general mood sounds like a live recording. It is exactly what we wanted.

Lyrically the songs feel like a statement and attack on the toxicity in the world and us as people but also at times seem to carry a personal breath or essence of the writer, how much of the album is that close to the personal thoughts and experiences of the band?

Some songs come from the previous singer and have just been revisited and adapted by Tumulash, others have been written by Tumulash himself and they speak about some personal things I really don’t like to talk about. Some lines are quite clean to understand, some are more cryptic. Each listener can find his own way to decode them.

It is hard for any band to grab a spotlight when releasing an album, even a band like Kult with a strong and acclaimed pedigree from previously releases; how have you found it with Unleashed From Dismal Light especially within black metal circles?

Our previous label, French Debemur Morti Productions, did an amazing job some years ago spreading the Kult name all around and selling/trading a lot of copies as well…so well, when we recorded the new album we just sent some promos around and Folter Records was the fastest one which gave us a good offer. Actually we knew the label and the guy behind it for a long time so we quickly agreed to work together. It is always easier when you know the guys personally and there is some kind of mutual respect for each other work.

KULT_BandfotoCan we expect a full on presence from Kult from now on live and from the studio, no six years before the next release? 😉

I hope not of course! ha ha! Kult are back to stay but you know, life is full of traps and misfortune behind every corner. The only sure thing, except Death, is that we have a lot of live shows booked for the next year including some interesting festivals as well, so no time to slow down even for a bit!

Talking of those live shows is there anything planned tour wise to promote Unleashed From Dismal Light?

We discussed many times with Folter Records about a possible tour for Kult but we need to check all the details each time. It is not easy ‘cause we all have a regular job but we’ll see what we can do. For sure we’ll play as much as we can and are talking about single shows or festival appearances.

Once again many thanks for sparing time to chat with us, any last thoughts you wish to share?

Thanks for the space. Give “Unleashed From Dismal Light” a listen.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/KULT/166348940061985

Read the Unleashed From Dismal Light review @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/kult-unleashed-from-dismal-light/

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 16/12/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Kult – Unleashed From Dismal Light

KULT_Bandfoto

Italian black metallers Kult have returned with their strongly anticipated second album Unleashed From Dismal Light and as the eight track release savages the senses with its raw and rapacious malevolence you cannot avoid feeling that it is a long overdue violation. The album does not defy expectations, the Como quartet proudly uncaging the resourceful old school black metal they build their sound upon and are known for, the release leaving the genre’s boundaries safe from rupturing into new pastures but with a causticity and vitriol which ignites the senses the album provides a healthy level of satisfaction as the band comes back into focus.

Kult was formed in 2002 by guitarist Kacele and vocalist Werewolf, and within its first year released the Total Devastation demo whilst playing shows across Italy and Switzerland. It was their 2007 released debut album Winds Of War which cast the band to a wider attention around Europe and further afield, the band backing it and their emerging stature with tours and festival appearances. It has been six years between albums but with new vocalist Tumulash replacing Werewolf who left the band earlier this year, alongside Kacele, bassist Davide White, and drummer Gionata Potenti, Kult and Unleashed From Dismal Light looks set to reignite the band’s reputation and presence within black metal.

Released via cult German label Folter Records, the album emerges from a sinister ambience as opener Specter’s Recurrence Kult_UnleashedFromDismalLight_Covercomes into view. The haunting coaxing sets a menacing atmospheric scene, church bells tolling for the impending menace and unbridled ferocity launched by guitars and rhythms, a sonic pestilence ridden by the equally rabid vocal squalls. With acidic melodic lures entwined around the battering of intensive rhythms and venomous delivery of Tumulash, it is an unsurprising but tasty savagery, the bestial bass tones and occasional eruption of addictive hooks sparking an eager appetite for the onslaught.

The intensive examination of the ears continues with Malicious Metamorphosis, the prowling entrance of the track an immediate doom clad embrace given a destructive breath by Tumulash. The bass of White again has a dark voice which grips attention from within the strong persuasion of the song, its stalking potent bait within the winding sonically sculpted melodies wrapped in coarse intensive persistence. The production on song and release is murky, which accentuates the suffocating nature of the immersive sound but also suppresses the clarity of some of the stronger invention and enterprise, leaving thoughts unsure of its success either way. Nevertheless the album continues to satisfy and spark the imagination as the predatory Exercitus Mortorum with its carnivorous intent and swaggering rabidity alongside the merciless To Flagellate Life soon prove.

Unleashed From Dismal Lights at no point sets the passions aflame but certainly has them awoken to its increasingly predacious assault. Raging Curse Upon Man is another stalking beast of a track, sinews and gait concentrated on corruption of the senses whilst rhythms tumble and roam through the ear with a vindictive nature to match the ever voracious vocals. The track exploits the essences of black metal at its original core to make a strong introduction but when turning in a temptation of dirty rock ‘n’ roll loaded with wanton addictive grooves it raises the pinnacle of the album with ease, its most adventurous and exploratory encounter.

The rampant Into Deadly Coils with its bordering on folkish swing is another major highlight of the release, the track an irrepressible almost friendly encounter with its brief but enticing instrumental presence, whilst the following Sons of Nightfall and closing track Senza Pace complete the album with an insidiously taunting yet potently alluring sprawl of blackened malevolence.

Much of the inventive depths of the songs are overwhelmed by the instinctive sonic venom and smothering production of the album it is fair to say but offers enough strength to tempt within the tempest to make Unleashed From Dismal Light a very worthy focus for the attention of old school black metal fans and those with a broader remit. Kult has not reinvented the wheel but appealingly made it roll with raw invention to again mark the band out.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/KULT/166348940061985

7/10

RingMaster 29/11/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Isvind – Daumyra

Isvind_Band_Picture

Revisiting and revitalising old school Norwegian black metal, Daumyra the new album from Oslo duo Isvind takes the senses and thoughts on a corrosive and exhausting ride through the darkest insidious shadows and coldest blistering realms. It is a release which sparks and captures the imagination, and though arguably it is not trespassing on new adventures it undoubtedly gives existing avenues a fresh and intensive examination.

Formed as a trio back in 1993 under the name Icewind, the band drew attention with its first two demos, The Call of The Icewind and Herskerinnen, the second release under the changed name of Isvind and down to the pair of Arak Draconiiz (guitars, bass, vocals) and Goblin (drums, vocals, keyboards). This was followed two years later in 1996 by debut album Dark Waters Stir, again on Solistitum Records. Apart from the release of a split with Italian band Orchrist in 2003 and another demo the following year, the band lay in the shadows for many years before returning with the album Inent Lever in 2011. The release saw the band still immersed and inspired by the early sound of the genre and earning strong responses, something the equally soaked in black metal seeding Daumyra is sure to emulate. The eight track Folter Records released album again does not deviate from the core sound and enthralling presence of the band which evolved in the early days but still manages to offer an inventive breath which feeds the hungry appetites of the modern flavoured fan.

Opener Kast Loss emerges from a blaze of harsh ambience and teasing fire, its wind a cold harshness stoking up atmosphere and chilling Isvind_Daumyra_Coverwaves within its scenery from which the track bursts with riffs and rhythms assassinating the remaining air with a carnivorous intent. Lurking within there is an addiction causing groove and heavy metal swipes which colour the dark rasping serpentine tones of the vocals and sonic temptation. The guitars niggle and graze from the first second of the song’s full expulsion, making an unrelenting provocation as intimidating as it is compelling and inviting.

It is a very strong start matched by the following Burn The Kings, the track again merciless in its grinding surge through the ear. There is a kinship between the first two songs; a similarity which binds their combined potency into a pleasing tool, and though they share individualism compared to other songs it only goes to reinforce the impact of the album’s entrance.

The thunderous Blodstorm raises the game before handing over to the pinnacle of the album The Dark Traverse. The first of the pair tears synapses with a sonic flame rich in alluring repetition and bewitching rapaciousness, whilst the drums cage its ferociousness in a steel clad mesh of continually shifting and intensifying confrontation. It is a provocative fury loaded with malevolent caustic vocals and their bestial narrative, and another slice of toxic bait hard to resist. That enthralling poison only intensifies with its successor, the track immediately snatching the senses into its savage claws of sound and energy. A tempest of crucial riffing, rhythmic predation, and riot of grooves, the song is a breath-taking avalanche of sonic majesty, the deeper into its jaws you are sucked the bigger and more immense it grows. Pure blackened evil and skilled maliciousness the track is a destructive tour de force of the album.

Both Djevelens Lende and Myra unleash a thick and suffocating blizzard of sonic, predatory, and rancorous austerity, their touch and presence, biting cold yet inflammatory, grave but contagious. Against their predecessor the tracks trail in its wake but nevertheless leave a touch which instils claws in thoughts and emotions.

Completed by the excellent Specculum, its initial rhythmic stomp and riffs charge changing gear into a primal examination of itself and the senses, and the callously unyielding Klabautermann, the album is a thoroughly satisfying and rousing encounter. Daumyra may not be the most original release to come your way, even compared to Isvind’s earlier work, but it does leave hunger and wants full and ready for more.

http://isvind.net/

8/10

RingMaster 15/08/2013

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