Black Soul Horde, Horrors From The Void (Vinyl Store 2021)

Greek dark metal band Black Soul Horde take a journey through the Lovecraftian ether on Horrors from the Void.

Black Soul Horde is rapidly building a reputation for reliably creating epic metal landscapes in dark dimensions. Take last year’s Land Of Demise, for example, and the earlier Tales of the Ancient Ones (2013). The music has an Iron Maiden kind of scale but leans in a somewhat speedier direction. The band is Jim Kotsis (vocals), John Tsiakopoulos (guitar, bass), and Costas Papaspyrou (guitar). Vasilis Nanos is the drummer for the recording session.

The new album has a specific narrative focus on the mythology created by H. P. Lovecraft. A lot of metal bands have found rich veins to mine in Lovecraft, and for good reason. Not every song on Horrors From The Void is sourced entirely from this realm but they do all have mystical premises. The way Black Soul Horde uses the literature it is to take an idea or story and set it in an imminently digestible metal package of approachable, catchy riffs and thrilling lead breaks.

We hear on these eight tracks a talent for melody and astute composition that make every song a living experience. It is metal told at an epic scale and Kotsis’s voice is strong and clear – well patterned to the musical paradigm. My favorites are the opener and the penultimate track, “Beneath the Mountains of Madness” and “The Curse,” because they exhibit all the individual elements that make the album work so well as a whole.

The CD version of the album contains two bonus tracks, “Dragonfire” and “The Horde.” It is worth getting the physical for these songs because of the blistering lead work on “Dragonfire” and the grand presentation that is “The Horde.” If you liked their last album Land of Demise then you will like this one, too. For me, the new one goes a notch higher. Recommended.

Horrors From The Void is out tomorrow, November 10th, in CD and digital formats. Links below.

Links.

Bandcamp, https://blacksoulhorde.bandcamp.com/album/horrors-from-the-void

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

Vinyl Store, https://www.vinylstore.gr/

Black Soul Horde, Horrors From The Void (Vinyl Store 2021)

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.

Links.

Bandcamp, http://blacksoulhorde.bandcamp.com

Facebook, http://facebook.com/blacksoulhorde

Black Soul Horde, Land of Demise (2020)