(Fallen-Angels Productions, 2016)
#FOR FANS OF: Swedish Death/Black/Thrash
The new split release bringing together Swedish deathsters Nominon, Japanese black/thrash maniacs Sabbat and Texas death metal revivalists Blaspherion on one platter is a wholly enjoyable sampling for each of the bands presented. For Nominon, the name of game is straightforward Swedish death metal and they’re not fooling anyone with the opening notes signaling their intention of paying homage to those greats from the start. Deep, churning chainsaw-flavored grooves and that rattling old-school production are in full-effect and not for a second are dropped throughout here as the up-tempo rhythms are at the forefront of their attack and it’s just simple, straightforward efforts. This straightforward attitude might wear on some, but the competence of their attack more than makes up for it. ‘Release in Death’ takes raging rhythms galloping along through a bouncy mid-tempo pace with plenty of swirling rhythms and dynamic drumming keeping the jagged patterns along through the sprawling mid-section and on into the blistering riff-work raging through the final half for a superb opening effort. ‘Mountain of Hate’ features tight, thumping and blistering rhythms through the intense drum-work that keeps the furious, frantic rhythms carrying along throughout the straightforward and pounding grooves grinding away into the finale for a fun and enjoyable effort. ‘Son of Doom’ uses the sampled intro into tight, pounding rhythms and plenty of deep grooves swirling away into the frantic up-tempo rhythms as the mild mid-tempo sprawling section gives way to blistering rhythms and drumming into the final half for a strong effort. Finally, ‘Rigor Mortis’ rips through a series of raging drumming and deep churning grooves taking a series of frantic rhythms along through the deep series of churning and tight raging riff-work that bounces along through the fiery patterns into the finale for a fun and enjoyable conclusion to their side. The Japanese entity Sabbat, known for their productivity and ardent work-ethic, offers a simplistic and slightly rawer take on the old-school black/thrash style as the central riffing is built around simplistic plodding thrash arrangements with plenty of weirdly-accented vocals that adds a wholly appealing dynamic to their sound. They’re ultra-simplistic and even somewhat sloppy in their arrangements, but those weird vocals over the raw rhythms make it a slightly more appealing take with these creating such a different stylistic take compared to the more death metal-oriented groups surrounding them on the split. The rawness and simplicity might be too much for some to take, but they’ve been around this long for a reason. ‘The Egg of Dapple’ slowly works through a simple churning riff with plodding rhythms slowly carrying the simple, discordant melody along through the overlong, plodding series of simplistic notes into the final half for a mostly unimpressive start. ‘Mion's Hill (20th Epic Gezol Version)’ features a plodding mid-tempo series of swirling rhythms and tight drumming that continually churns along through the majestic marching and swirling riff-work carrying on throughout the extended finale for a highly enjoyable effort. ‘Sabbat’ uses a ferocious charging series of rhythms and raw riffing to blast through a ferocious assault with the tight thrashing riff-work and blistering, pounding drumming taking on plenty of tight, frantic patterns throughout the charging, utterly schizoid final half for a savage, feral attack. Lastly, the epic ‘Harmageddon’ charges for with simple punk-ish riffing and straightforward blasting drumming with plenty of up-tempo rhythms and straightforward thumping drumming carrying the frantic mid-tempo sections through the extended series of psychedelic-styled swirling riffing leading into the raging finale for a grand and enjoyable effort to finish their side. Lastly, Blaspherian is a rather curious case with their old-school Incantation-worshipping style that comes straight from their playbook. From the tight, swirling riffing and rather brutal attack, there’s a simplistic approach to their attack that’s given all the more life here based on their production style that effectively matches that dirty, droning style so prominent in that approach. It’s all quite obvious and apparent of this influence as the choppy swirling rhythms and propensity for including sprawling sections of extended laid-back tempos, yet this works for their favor by allowing for plenty of easy-access to their sound by being this familiar to their chosen approach. ‘Praising Impurity’ goes from the spoken-word intro into a tight, swirling series of riffing and plenty of wholly vicious swirling rhythms alongside the deep, churning patterns charging into the tight, frantic final half getting this off to a nice start. ‘In the Shadow’ takes a slow, simple sprawling pace with frantic swirling riff-work before turning into a series of frantic rhythms with plenty of blasting up-tempo rhythms carrying the fine up-tempo paces charging along into the finale for another rather fine effort. ‘Lies of the Cross’ slowly works through the swirling paces into a series of blistering and frantic rhythms holding the series of deep, churning patterns swirling along throughout and leading along into the straightforward fade-out final half for a decent-if-unimpressive effort. Finally, a live version of ‘The Blessings of Sanctity Rescinded’ effectively captures the savageness and brutality of their regular work with a tight-ness and intensity that’s carried over nicely even if the slowed-down tempos come off even more obvious with the restrained tempos and feedback ensuring the live version is apparent throughout. Overall, though, this is still a highly enjoyable split release.