Monday, December 31, 2012

Chapel Of Disease - Summoning Black Gods [2012]

As much as I was impressed by the vital, fleshy energy that the Germans Chapel Of Disease conjured with their cryptic demo that came out earlier this year, make no mistake, these vile retros are not putting anything new on the table, even though it undeniably sounds refreshing for die-hards and connoisseurs alike. That being said, the debut by the Teutonic quartet took me by surprise as they unleashed their debut via the overly frenetic oldfactory producers FDA Recotz, and to be fair, despite the limitation of imagination generated from the band's lack of variety in accumulating influences, ''Summoning Black Gods'' does not suspend the hungry listener in iron manacles of banality and delivers quite a heaving, archaic punch with a nice stretch of classic old school death metal influences a la Pestilence, Autopsy, Death, and, as we didn't have enough Swedish death metal to deal with, a splurging context of primal chainsaw ruptures.

The intake of Swedeath is fortunately in less copious amounts than you might expect, and churned up with a classy, foreboding edge, it really turns the album into a panoply of memorable compositions and semi-thrashy textures, all sewed to each other by a raw, highly nostalgic raw overtone. At times,  the band channels the harsher formulas that marginally deviate from the tremolo-laced riffing by having simpler vitality, reeking of 1988, yet what I especially love about the band is that they effortlessly eke out sepulchral hymns and they can perfectly exhibit their love for pestilential antiquities whilst carving out subtexts of these grave-ish moods, perhaps most vivid on ''Evocation of the Father'', a melodious collision of trudging grooves that has an almost Gothic appeal to it. Even though it seems the band is staking their entire momentum by replacing nearly a half of their performance with mid-paced grooving, the subtle balance in between thrash and death is measured adequately and the band is nearly always on-time in lashing just after gloomy transitions and erupt into headbang-friendly death/thrash tumult before you even realize what's going on.

Thankfully, ''Summoning Black Gods'' is infected, though not overarching in a way that could completely asphyxiate the listener. Here, cavern walls don't gradually enclose around you and decompression doesn't overwhelm; instead, as you may understand, these Germans are just staunch freaks that pursue their nostalgic masters Pestilence, Asphyx, Autopsy, Death, Morbid Angel, Vital Remains and the like, and the album is really based on letting out frivolous, encrypted and manic burden that stayed hinged inside the cranial contents of the Germans for far too long. To me, they seem like an unlikely crossover of their archaic countrymen Immortalis and their label mates Skeletal Remains, which have chosen a thicker, if not more technical approach to deviate from the same vein. While not imaginative by any means, this is probably one of the better altars built to worship the aforementioned masters over the last five years; even the vocals have condensed on the Van Drunnen timbre, and this also marks, or helps establish, a new scene for spawn new abominations to spawn and rock their way out the graveyard. A crashing rhythmic fair with a frightening edge. Definitely a nice treat.

Exili's Heritage
The Nameless City
Summoning Black Gods

Rating: 83%

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