Maul, Gallery Of Torment (Corrupted Flesh Records 2021)

Gathered together for your aural annihilation, Gallery Of Torment is a compilation of Death Metal delights from Maul.

Maul came together four years ago or so in the northern plains. Plying the Death metal trade with an eye to individualization, the band has laid down steady tracks with demos, splits and EPs. This new collection gathers together enough breadcrumbs so you can hear what the band is about. Currently, Maul is Anthony Lamb (guitar), Alex Nikolas (guitar), Garrett Alvarado (vocals), Robby Anderson (drums), and Michael Nikolas (bass).

The compilation has twelve songs altogether with four tracks from Monarchy of Mold (2020), two each from Midwest Death Demo (2018), Deity Demise (2020), and Soaked in Penance, Solicit the Torture (2018), and one each from Ambiguous Lurk (2019) and Adoration Through Annihilation (2019). That covers a lot of ground and gathers together the principle components from these earlier releases (and the whole thing in the case of the single “Ambiguous Lurk”).

There is a good deal of variety in the music. The opening track, for example, “Chained, Hanged, and Dragged,” has a military march feel to it in the opening riffs that kick in after the intro and the urging percussion is matched nicely to doom sensibilities. “Infatuation” has a more all-encompassing vibe to it, while “Monarchy of Mold” goes off in an eerie direction. There is a lot here to engage you.

My favorites are “Same Soil” – I really like the driving directness – and “Deity Demise” – the heavy, pulverizing approach had me running that track a few times. Gallery Of Torment is an excellent way to catch up on Maul if you have not been following the trail so far. It is Death Metal that leans more on the heavy than the speed. Recommended.

The album drops on Friday, May 28th in versions from four different publishers including Hostile Records (Malaysia, Asia cassette version), Frozen Screams Imprint (US, cassette version), Cavernous Records (UK, CD version), and Corrupted Flesh Records (Germany, EU cassette and LP versions). Bandcamp is a good place to search for these varieties.

Links.

Corrupted Flesh Bandcamp, https://corruptedfleshrecords.bandcamp.com/album/gallery-of-torment

Maul Bandcamp, https://maul701.bandcamp.com/

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

Maul, Gallery Of Torment (Corrupted Flesh Records 2021)

Tundra, The Mirror Of Elizabeth (Corrupted Flesh Records 2021)

Tundra’s concept EP The Mirror Of Elizabeth gets a limited edition stand-alone release.

The story goes that this EP was originally recorded in 2013 but never released on its own as intended. It was, however, released in its entirety on the Dreams of a Gone Existence split with Korium in 2015.

Why get it now? There are a couple of fascinating iterations in this release to choose from, including a fairly plain cassette version and one bundle that has a necklace with a bit of blood in it. Your interest all depends on your level of fandom here.

The music itself is a themed cycle concerning Elizabeth Bathory, remembered in history for bathing in human blood to maintain her youth, along with other assorted purported activities. There is an intro piece and then four songs. The main tracks are a raw brand of Black Metal with a caustic edge in the guitars and vocals. It is grim and gritty music – just exactly right for the subject matter. But it is more than that, too. I like this EP a lot. It isn’t run-of-the-mill Black Metal at all as it has strong doom and gothic elements to it. There are even sorrowful moments, especially in the title track and the closing song, “Triumphant March Of Death.”

If you had heard about this musical sequence and always wanted it in its own presentation then this is a good week for you. Definitely grab it up if you want a hard copy, and if you have never heard it before find a way to listen. All Black Metal fans should definitely hear The Mirror Of Elizabeth. Recommended.

The limited edition cassette can be pre-ordered now for a May 14th shipment and the digital has been available ready to go. Links below.

Links.

Bandcamp, https://corruptedfleshrecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-mirror-of-elizabeth

Corrupted Flesh Records, https://www.corrupted-flesh.com/product/tundra-the-mirror-of-elizabeth-limited-edition-tape-incl-digital-download

Tundra website, https://www.totalhumancollapse.net/tundra.html

Tundra Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/tundrablackmetal/

Tundra, The Mirror Of Elizabeth (Corrupted Flesh Records 2021)