Abyssus, Death Revival (Transcending Obscurity 2022)

Greek death metal band Abyssus starts their tenth year with a full-length addition to their canon, Death Revival.

The new album might be only the second long-player from Athens-based Abyssus, but that statistic is misleading because they have released a great deal of music in the past decade. In fact, there are so many splits and EPs it is hard to keep track of them all. The band did release a compilation in 2016 called Once Entombed… that collects some of the earliest work they did, and that helps fans and collectors keep up. The best way to get started if you are new to Abyssus is to listen to their new album, Death Revival.

The music is a sort of thrash-inspired death metal. The new album hosts seven ravaging tracks that walk the line and, at times, crash right over it. Once you hear the album, you are going to want to go back and listen to more. The band is Konstantinos Analytis (vocals), Panos Gkourmpaliotis (guitar), Konstantinos Ragiadakos (bass), Jan Westermann (drums), and Chris Liakos (guitar).

“Metal Of Death” begins with a gentle rainstorm then comes crashing in hard and fast enough to give you a nose bleed. It is very much a thrash track with the riffs and lead breaks to match, and heavy vocals that turns it toward the world of death metal. Other songs are structured this way as well, but then you have divergences like “The Beast Within,” that strike a heavy groove and pair it with peppering blast beats.

I have a particular affection for “The Witch,” the shortest song of the set, for its sinister vibrancy, and for the closer, “When Wolves Are Out To Hunt,” which is the longest track. That final piece is dramatic, cinematic, and thoroughly rousing in every metal particular. Listening to it is an experience. Seek this album out – it is most excellent. Highly recommended.

Death Revival lurches to life today, Friday, January 21st, through Transcending Obscurity Records.


Bandcamp, https://abyssusgreece.bandcamp.com/

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/Abyssus666

Transcending Obscurity Records, https://transcendingobscurity.aisamerch.com/

Abyssus, Death Revival (Transcending Obscurity 2022)

Blessed By Perversion, Remnants Of Existence (2020)

Remnants Of Existence is the newest album from Blessed By Perversion, following up on their 2016 debut long-player Between Roots And Darkness.

The band entered the vibrant Greek metal scene in 2012 with their Destroy The Image Of God EP. Since then they have been working their way through the caverns of heavy music, making consistent progress and expanding their fan base. The basic style is a crowd-pleasing Death Metal crossover that will appeal to listeners of many different metal subgenres. The musicians are Manolis Kouelo (guitar), Kostas Foutris (guitar), Andreas Moschopoulos (vocals), Vaggelis Nanos (bass), and Vasilis Nanos (drums).

There are five songs on the EP plus a quiet, tense intro piece. “Gallery of Bones” sets the pace with steady rhythm and percussion alongside the gruff, intelligible vocals. The composition is very approachable, being neither dense nor highly complex, and the song includes a tasty lead break. “Atonement Refused” picks up the pace, moving toward the high end of mid-tempo, and including a couple of 80’s metal guitar warble homage moments. “Among The Tombs of Absent Gods” and “Caverns of Torture” establish viable bridges to the closer, “Within Monumental Chaos.” This song is my favorite of the set, and has perhaps the darkest tone and excellent rhythm and percussion elements. The bass line and the lead guitar are the most challenging here too, showing the breadth of expression the band is willing and able to display.

Remnants Of Existence is out now, and the quickest pick-up is at Bandcamp. Get some more metal in your 2021. Recommended.


Bandcamp, https://blessedbyperversion.bandcamp.com/album/remnants-of-existence

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/blessedbyperversion

Blessed By Perversion, Remnants Of Existence (2020)

Black Soul Horde, Land of Demise (2020)

Heavy riffs are pulsing from the Greek Islands as Black Soul Horde release their second album.

It has been a while since we heard new music from Athens heavy metal band Black Soul Horde. Their first album, Tales Of The Ancient Ones, came out in 2013. There have been a lot of twists and turns since then, but, whatever road had to be traveled, the journey was a success because the new album is a showcase of old school metal. The primary driving force in the band is John Tsiakopoulos (guitars and bass), who also did all the producing and technical studio work. John is joined on Land of Demise by Jim Kotsis (vocals) and Costas Papaspyrou (guitar solos), with session drumming by Vasilis Nanos.

The musical style is a classic brand of heavy metal with clear New Wave Of British Heavy Metal roots. You can hear this in the vocals particularly but also in the rhythm and riffs. The percussion is more on the contemporary metal side and this overall combination seasons the songs for a crossover palate.

“Stone Giants” gets things started with a confident thumping tick and growing feedback consolidating into a theatrical opening (ala Vivian Campbell on Holy Diver, say). You start to get a sense of the scale of the musical composition as early as the second song “Into The Badlands,” where elements of epic metal show through, the drums really start roar, and a generous lead break makes its appearance.

Fantasy strands are persistent in the narrative themes and they shape the overall feel of the album. The songs are held in the four minute range, making them confrontable. The final songs are every bit as strong as the ones in the middle and the beginning. Indeed, the lead work winds up to new levels near the end in “Lord Of All Darkness” and, the closer, “Iron Will,” is a raging torrent with sinister outro. This album is definitely throwing up sparks. Recommended.

Land Of Demise had been delayed for a little while because of the pandemic. The digital is out now, with a CD release slated for December 14th, followed by the vinyl early in February.


Bandcamp, http://blacksoulhorde.bandcamp.com

Facebook, http://facebook.com/blacksoulhorde

Black Soul Horde, Land of Demise (2020)