released February 23, 2016
Recorded at The Pandemonium
Produced by The Baphomet
Engineered by The Baphomet
Mastered at The Pandemonium by The Baphomet
All songs by Kyryem
"... it’s a strange, multi-faceted, often hard-rocking trip that kept me feeling unbalanced but enthralled all the way through."
"The “blackened death metal” definition given here to the band’s style is a most misleading one since their music has very little to do with those two genres except for a few more aggressive vocal inclusions; it’s pretty much dark atmospheric power/thrash with shades of progressive and industrial, a unique symbiosis which gives them plenty of opportunities to play around with. As a result the guys (and a girl, the bass player) carve a niche for themselves on the contemporary music horizon, a journey that starts with the album reviewed here.
The opener “Tragedy” is a pounding power/thrasher with hard lashing riffs and disorienting vocal diversity which includes subdued, semi-whispered deathy vocals, sinister witch-like narratives, and ethereal female croons which race with the superb melodic lead sections. “Loneliness” is a nearly technical shredder before stomping officiancy comes forward later replaced by a more serene balladic passage and beautiful lead-driven atmospherics. “Oblivion” pounds forward in a linear classic power metal fashion speeding up towards the end with great intricate accumulations. “Cult” is the total opposite to its predecessor thrashing hard from the get-go with epic build-ups breaking the stride until a lush, very lengthy atmospheric balladic stroke settles in, occupying half the playing time.
This somewhat awkward moment is made up with “Landfill”, a short ripping speed/thrasher that will make all the headbangers happy. “Thule” isn’t very far behind despite the overlong noisy intro; its speed/thrashy aesthetics are a tad more lyrical with beautiful melodies interfering at some stage to bring more pathos into the proceedings which surrender to a slower, downbeat ending. “Believers” isn’t a sloucher, either, and the thrash is put up front again the band moshing in a dark, brooding unison with frequent stomping additives. “Annatar” indulges in another not very necessary noisy dash at first, but expect steel volcanic guitars to enter your aura, their march seldom interrupted save for a virtuous lead section and a beautiful closing gothic epitaph with angelic female vocal participation. “Inquisitor” is an industrial doomy miasma the band unleashing a myriad of heavy ship-sinking riffs patiently wading through this impenetrable funereal “mist”, a fascinating blend of early Cathedral and Godflesh.
In the end the only actual complain comes from these very long noisy inaugurations which serve to no purpose to these ears, playing with the listener’s nerves who is never sure whether they are just an introduction, or will last for the whole stretch. The rest is spot on as the atmosphere is sustained throughout even on the speedy escapades which give this album an attractive urgent feel those dynamic rushes sunk deep on the closing encompassing doomster. A nice contrast by all means that will ensure wider crowd that may even comprise a few black metal heads, those who are enamored by the Barathrum-esque bleakness, or fancy the baroque operatic melodramas of Wykked Wytch.
The band are very prolific with an EP also released in 2015, followed by two more full-lengths in the next two years. They’re intent on keeping the inertia accumulated as the aforementioned compelling blend is pretty much intact on every opus with slightly increased complexity on the latest saga, with longer more elaborate compositions, bordering on the progressive. It’s a sombre (un)certain ride all the same, one that bears enough surprises to keep the audience hooked, and one that has already gotten the job done, to catapult the band to the forefront of the occult practitioners of the dark side."
Keepers of the Dark Occult Flame