Black Metal Roundup: Hod + Flagellant + Malnatt

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Reviews by Jason Guest

It’s close to midnight. There’s something evil lurking in the dark. There, under the moonlight, stands a sight that would stop the heart and seize the scream from the lungs of the most fearless amongst us. Those that witness its presence are paralysed as it makes its way to the portal to the pit beneath Midlands Rocks’ Towers. The hatch slams shut, the dust settles, and there on the desk, encrusted in the now-familiar antediluvian dust and reeking of an unknowable ancient age, lie three more black metal releases for review. Click the band names to go to the reviews or read them all.

  • From San Antonio, Texas, comes Hod‘s The Uncreated Demo
  • Sweden’s Flagellant we have their second full length, Maledictum
  • And from Italy’s Malnàtt is their fifth album, Principia Discordia

Hod – The Uncreated Demo

Self-released

With a couple releases under their belt already – including 2009’s full length SerpentHod’s blackened death metal ticks all the boxes. Intense, ruthless, and ugly as all hell, this three-track demo is no less savage than their previous works. The riffs are vicious, the vocals ferocious, and the drumming unremitting, and the three tracks are a tantalising taster of what is to come when the band find a record company to release their next album. If this is anything to go by, it will be incredible.

Hod – The Uncreated Demo7 out of 10

Track Listing:

  1. Beneath The Mountains Of The Scorpions
  2. I Am Destroyer
  3. When The Ghouls Feed

 


Flagellant – Maledictum

World Terror Committee

Returning with their second album, Sweden’s Flagellant are black metal to their very core and they aren’t about to compromise. As raw and primitive as the first wave of black metal, Flagellant’s sound is an all-consuming, incendiary chasm of Satanism, darkness and death. With a cleaner (though no less filthy) production than their début, the instrumentation has more body than their first album and so with the bass heavier in the mix, the weight of their sovereign savagery is more commanding. A distinct sense of urgency throughout, their death-tainted, blackened wall of fire is laced with tremolo-picked galloping riffs, contorted arpeggios, scathing vocals, and a dense atmosphere that is simultaneously asphyxiating and purifying. At fifty three minutes, the album may be too long but its discordance, its dissonance, its sheer darkness and despair is undeniable. Flagellant may not be breaking any new ground but what they are producing is unadulterated black metal malice of superior quality. Recommended.

Flagellant – Maledictum7.5 out of 10

Track listing:

  1. From The Abyss They Shine
  2. Towers Of Silence
  3. Necromantic Revelations
  4. Domini Canes
  5. A Rebirth In Sterility
  6. Horned Shadows Rise
  7. Rousing The Serpent
  8. Thirteen Cauldrons Boil

 


Malnàtt – Principia Discordia

Bakerteam Records

Once a more folk-inspired black metal band, Italy’s Malnàtt have made a distinct move into more experimental and extreme territories with their fifth full length, Principia Discordia. Though the production is much cleaner, their structures more elaborate and their arrangements developed, combined with an image that is, frankly, a ridiculous attempt to appear humorous, it somehow lacks the ferocity to make the impact it perhaps could.

An admirable admixture of the black, the symphonic, the atmospheric, and the Scandinavian, technically, Malnàtt are impressive, and their ability to combine the discordant with the melodic is noteworthy. But their attempt to incorporate humour into the blackened barrage gets lost in translation. Were they to strip away the gags and the gimmicks, Malnàtt could produce something outstanding.

Malnàtt – Principia Discordia7 out of 10

Track Listing:

  1. Manifesto Nichilista
  2. L’amor Sen Va
  3. Il Canto Dell’odio
  4. Iper Pagano
  5. Intramezzo Erisiano
  6. Nel Di Dei Morti
  7. Don Matteo
  8. Ave Discordia
  9. Ho Sceso Dandoti Il Braccio
  10. Ulver Nostalgia
  11. Il Sentiero Nidi Di Ragnarok