Sunday, September 9, 2012

Gospel Of The Horns - Ceremonial Conjuration

You can never go wrong with Gospel Of The Horns. If your ignorance still render you unaware of their presence, let me fill you in briefly. Gospel hail from Australia, where the black/thrash genre has reached its climax in efficiency and development, and frankly along with Destroyer 666, these vandals are the ones who brought black/thrash to a new level of ferocity and velocity, and thus, Gospel Of The Horns is an old act, one that has released numerous demos and EPs throughout the 90's, finally releasing their debut album ''A Call To Arms'' in 2002 and their sophomore in 2007. This EP is lengthwise a large fragment of an album, nearly twenty minutes, and if we go by a traditional sense, the band should be releasing another album this year, since there's a time space of five years in between each record, though judging by the fact that they've only completed half of the material required to muster an album, in profound agitation and melancholy, I must admit that I fear a full-length is more remote than you might think. This, of course, is my theory.

Nonetheless, I can still be quite content with eighteen minutes of heavily blasted, grinding vicious black/thrash, something that I'm an absolute sucker for. Mongrel's Cross,Warfare, Ketzer and Aura Noir already delivered their fair share of solid ruptures of frenetic black/thrash, carnal and bestial, and Gospel Of The Horns do not fail to deliver, either. You get plenty of variation throughout those eighteen minutes, more than you may expect if truth be told. You have ruinous, torrential outbursts of traumatizing bestial black/thrash, hammering its way through with a sordid obelisk of a guitar tone, a classy rhythm department offering some grooving chord attacks, typical blackened speed/thrash excursions, and even some more numbing mid-paced stuff reeking of oppression like on ''Awakening'', and in addition, the band has an excellent cover of Goatlord's magnificent ''The Fog'' which is basically a black metal-induced version  of Asphyx. The music is simple, though requiring plenty of stamina to churn out those wicked grooves and impetuous tremolos, but as always, the Horns manage bisect their way through the rotten and sore flesh covering your ear holes.

The tone really boasts that juicy, punchy strength that riffs possess. and especially on the cover of ''The Fog'', you can absolutely feel the tremulous contractions of the entwining chords, shaking and stomping, pretty much like an Asphyx record, only eviler. The listener gets a lot of pleasure from the vocals, too. Seriously, if you consider the riffs as over or predictable, then you may as well dub the vocals as vague, bleak plumes of dark smoke, which is pretty much what they are, harsh, eerie and raucous rasps - pretty much an even more venomous kind of your traditional black/thrash rasps. ''Ceremonial Conjuration'' is great, to say the least, built robustly, and it exposes its bombastic, frivolous assaults of grim black/thrash, with no improvement whatsoever in the originality department, which totally fine by me. It would be wrong to say that Gospel Of The Horns are making a come back because they never split up, but after a semi-hiatus of five years, let's just hope that they continue to rain prodigious thunder on us, without procrastinating the incursion.

Ceremonial Conjuration
Sorcery And Blood
Conquering Self

Rating: 85%

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