From the dark heart of Finland comes Lord of Pagathorn with their third full-length album, Age Of Curse.
Formed in the tumultuous days of the early 1990s, the band put together a couple of demos but they never got the footing they needed to go forward. Re-grouping in the 2010s, they have found a stride where they can create a steady stream of tooth-rattling, unforgiving Black Metal. Band members are described in the press release this way: Corpselord (vocals, guitar), Skrubb (guitar), Ronitor (bass), and Skalder (battery).
A suitably ominous intro track lets you know things are about to get ugly. “Baneful Curse To Destroy Them All” punches in at top speed and pushes you over with its aggressive attack of vengeance. Hissing vocals and rapid-fire percussion sears you from beginning to end. The next track is very different, “Conqueror of Im-Kharasak.” The structure is more linear and it has an almost catchy riff. There is a reminiscence of Venom in there for me, too. Excellent.
“Instability Of Man” has a dramatic, theatrical timbre – you can see it unfolding on a stage before you while you listen. “Over Throned” is a pile driver and “Age Of Curse” is sheer chaos that infects the next two tracks. There is no respite until the final song, “Dragging In The Dust.” On that one the music shifts into a vile grinding campaign that leaves you with nothing. The vocalizations are emphatic and the last notes drip with sinister threats. Overall the album is a cascading attack that deploys customary Black Metal elements and uniquely stylized features to create a deliberate menace. Recommended.
Out on Friday May 21st, Bandcamp is the best way to buy the album and related materials in the US.
Lord Of Pagathorn website, http://www.lordofpagathorn.com/
Woodcut Records, http://www.woodcutrecords.fi/