Obliteration – Black Death Horizon

blackdeathhorizon_1500 (200x200)Leave it to Norway to aid in Death Metal’s perpetuation with an imminently worthy black (in concept) /death (in execution) release. Thank you, Obliteration, for gifting us all with Black Death Horizon, an album that takes Autopsy doom and meatgrinds it with ’80s crossover thrash and that period of proto-Death Metal before that resultant genre devolved into widespread use. Taking the Darkthrone production approach of a well-conceived demo, yet absolutely clear and punishing, Obliteration nail that delicate balance between polish and grit-power in sound that I’m always searching for yet rarely stumble across. Things kick off deliberately with the marshy doom of ‘The Distant Sun (They are the Key)’, dripping with hammer-on Sabbathness beckoning the rotting to rise up and be counted, with the voice-cracking, frustrated roar of Sindre Solem commanding his forces like a mortally wounded yet determined squad leader, urging us all to listen on with fear and trembling. And unlike many of their peers, Obliteration’s use of doom here isn’t as a brief intro to their death metal, for – like their aforementioned Reifert-fronted influence – the doom remains integral throughout their conflagration of sound, so that a full three and a half minutes pass before the speed and attack take the reins. By the time the pure-crack polka and d-beats arrive to violate your eardrums, accompanied by tremolo-picking imparted with punky open-chords, you’ve been properly prepared for the Metal euphoria that awaits you on the other side.

Amongst all the badassery are Arlid Myren Torp’s amazing leads, another side of Obliteration which may be overlooked. His layerings run the full gamut from dissonant and haunting to melodic and inspiring (in that grab-your-sword-and-slaughter kind of way). Unlike many black/death practitioners that allow riffs alone to recall the age of Reeboks, Torp’s solos deliver a Kill ‘Em All Hammett-heart, a Scream Bloody Schuldiner-soul, and even a Seven Churches LaLonde-liver right to your now-bloody doorstep. Pay special attention to his achievements when you listen for yourself; his arrangements help elevate the tracks above the putrid pile of lesser early death sycophants.

Obliteration’s latest will be remembered as an homage to the past that heralds the coming of an exciting extreme metal future. Listen, weep, and gaze in fear at what’s to come in our Black Death Horizon. -Jim

Relapse Records

~ by cliftonium on October 30, 2013.

5 Responses to “Obliteration – Black Death Horizon”

  1. Prior to listening and reviewing this album, have you had a chance to hear their 2nd album Nekropslams? If not, you should.

  2. Never heard them before now, but am certainly interested in hearing more. These guys kicked my ass \m/

  3. The boys in Nekromantheon know how to fuck it up for sure. I feel that Nekropslams hits more the Death Metal touch (ever so slightly) while this new one is a hint more like Nekromantheon in approach.

  4. Tasty leads indeed, and that well placed “ugh” hits the spot hehehe… The vocalist certainly seems to possess that Reifert brand of maniacal insanity. Great cover art as well!

  5. Another important thing to mention, if you like Diskord, you’ll certainly like Nekropslams, because there is a stunning similarity.

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