SVNTH, Spring In Blue review (Transcending Records 2020)

Seventh Genocide returns with a sweeping new album that wraps a shroud around the twitching world and draws out both instance and meaning from the complex non-ness of our contemporaneous existence.

SVNTH, the shorthand for Seventh Genocide, is an Italian band that blends many musical styles into their compositions. Most often referred to as Atmospheric Metal or Post-Black Metal, you must expect to have a variegated listening experience when you drop the needle.

Spring In Blue is the third full-length album from Seventh Genocide, and the current line-up includes founder Rodolfo Ciuffo (bass, vocals, acoustic guitar), Valerio Primo (drums), Stefano Allegretti (guitar), and Jacopo Gianmaria Pepe (guitar). There have been many musicians who have played in the band over the years, but the arc of the musical evolution has been consistence since its formation in 2006 due to the constant presence and direction of Rodolfo Ciuffo. If you want to know more about where the band is coming from spiritually and thematically, check out their Facebook page.

“Who Is The Dreamer” is the overture, and as such it is theatrical, segue to mystical then dramatic. Over the course of the next four long pieces, the purpose of the music is made clear, and the center of the conflict is transparently demonstrated. Apparitions, hallucinations, and frightening visions manifest in the building and bursting aural landscapes. The show closes with “Sons of Melancholia,” a song that has four minutes of light, pop-oriented instrumental to calm your nerves before the bolt gun is placed firmly against your forehead for a sudden blast of deathness. Eight minutes in there is a 70s-style guitar jam – very BÖC. And then there is a doom trudge to the captive end where you hear the siren call for the last time. This song encompasses, encapsulates, really, my experience with the entire album as a witness to events that mean more in truth than they seem to mean on the surface. You will not come away from even a single listening of this music without having seen or understood something differently than you did before. Recommended.

Spring In Blue is out now and ready for the taking at Bandcamp, Transcending Records, and all the other places you are used to for your musical needs.

Band photo by Void Revelations.

Links.

http://seventhgenocide.bandcamp.com

http://www.facebook.com/pg/seventhgenocide

http://www.youtube.com/user/SeventhGenocide

http://transcendingrecords.com

http://www.facebook.com/transcendingrecords

SVNTH, Spring In Blue review (Transcending Records 2020)

Black Elephant, Seven Swords review (Small Stone Records 2020)

The fuzzed-out Italian metal blues stoner band Black Elephant comes thundering back with Seven Swords.

The new album is a follow-up to 2018’s Cosmic Blues, which established the band’s bone fides. There is a clear theme for Seven Swords but not a consistent one. Maybe the way to put it is there is a strong theme running through the album. References to Japan appear in nearly every song, ranging from sumo with Yokozuna to art with Yayoi Kusama to solemnity with seppuku. But then there are other apparently entirely unrelated pieces, too, setting the listener on the path of jovial tongue-in-cheekedness which fits in with a stoner perspective quite well. The musicians are Alessio Caravelli (guitar and vocals), Massimiliano Giacosa (guitar), Marcello Destefanis (bass), and Simone Brunzu (drums) – a power rock set-up that delivers heavy desert blues and some sideways surprises.

The albums opens with a soft, spacey blues insinuation title “Berta’s Flame” that drops a heavy foot a couple times between whispers before a guitar lead rips the reality wide open halfway through. “The Last March of Yokozuna” begins life at first as a vacation on a South Pacific island, takes a big stomp, then quietens down again. And then the set really starts to rip. “Yayoi Kusama” has an opening groove that is almost boogie and the fuzziness verily surrounds you, rubbing your ears until you tingle. “Mihara” is a warbling space journey and, while the space journey continues throughout, guitars do rise from the lower decks and take over. “Red Sun and Blues Sun” is a rollicking good time promenade through a summer psychedelic garden with gentle musical shifts at every new blossom. “Seppuku” is heavy blues and deadly serious in its grinding waves, as the title suggest it would be. “Govinda” wraps everything up, and listens like a nine minute guided meditation that swells and shrinks and reveals.

Seven Swords is out Friday, August 28. If you preorder it on Bandcamp, you get “Berta’s Flame” right now and the rest at the end of next week. There are also CD and LP choices that all include digital downloads, too. Get your fuzz on. Recommended.

Links.

https://smallstone.bandcamp.com/album/seven-swords

http://www.smallstone.com

Black Elephant, Seven Swords review (Small Stone Records 2020)

Satyrus, Rites review (2020)

Italian doom project Satyrus release their first ode, Rites.

The members of Satyrus have been/are actively involved in other bands, largely focusing on non-doom subgenres like death metal, industrial, prog, hardcore punk, thrash, and so on. They have come together here to feed their need for pure doom. The musicians are Frankie Pizzimenti (guitar), Freddy Fish (bass), Gianni Passafiume (vocals), and Morgan Perrone (drums).

There is not an enormous amount of information floating around in the States about these four, apart from some of their previous associations and the fact that Facebook reports their hometown location as Palermo. That site also lists their influences as Black Sabbath and Coven. That has the ring of truth.

Rites is a self-released collection of five long songs that all boil in black blood of the earth. The opener is “Black Satyrus,” twelve minutes of mystical incantations, sinister intimations, and fuzzy dread. It has a slow build culminating in a lead solo that pierces the swollen cocoon that has been woven by the lead up. “Shovel” follows with a more determined thrust and a faster tempo. The lead guitar is positively frenetic for a doom song. That, in fact, is a characteristic of the album that you do not always see in music with this label: an active and independent lead guitar. It keeps you engaged in the music and also prevents you from dissolving into yourself from the mesmerizing bass and riffs.

I mark “Stigma” as the stand-out track on this release. It has a crunchy stomp and an almost bluesy vocal line. The lead guitar breaks come is as melody, another voice. About a third of the way through the song, the cadence shifts to an urgent anxiety only to be surrounded and soon encased in fuzzy riffs. A catastrophe occurs in the final third where grating animalistic noises are heard and then put to an end by ranging new beat. It’s a trip.

Available now at Bandcamp and Soundcloud, and also streaming on Spotify, Rites is a welcome addition to doom lore. Recommended.

Links.

https://www.facebook.com/satyrusdoom/

https://satyrus-occult.bandcamp.com/album/rites

Satyrus, Rites review (2020)