Despite being a young death Metal band, Obliteration from Kolbotn, Norway, also the home of extreme Metal heavyweights like Darkthrone and Aura Noir, have made huge waves in the extreme Metal world since their debut release, 'Perpetual Decay', in 2007, on Nocturno Culto of Darkthrone's cult label Tyrant Syndicate.
Their second album, 'Nekrospalms', in 2009 won the Osloprisen for best album and was described by Fenriz as: "A death Metal masterpiece", an album that saw the development of their own unique style, a blend of old school death Metal mixed with the best elements from doom, punk, thrash and old school black Metal.
Three years on and they return with ‘Black Death Horizon', an album which "does what it says on the tin!"
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It's a remarkable album of seven sepulchral tracks of haunting death Metal, featuring some of the most interesting and unusual, brilliantly tortuous vocals ranging from a shout to a tortured, skilfully discordant wailing scream that really gives an edge to the sound.
The guitar work spans from dark, haunting and doom laden to fast and thrashy. The drum work is brilliantly and powerfully tailored for each track, ranging from simple D-beats to complex patterns, garnishing every aspect of the highly complex and well crafted tracks, each of which is like an extreme journey though a dread filled evil sound-scape, filled with a lot of old school elements, encapsulating all that was good about the death Metal of old, carefully and cleverly assembled with a fresh modern and extremely intense feel.
Although there are so many components to each track, they don't sound over worked. Obliteration have managed to maintain a primitive and crushingly brutal feel and every track is packed with energy and enthusiasm.
Opening track 'The Distant Sun' begins with doom laden slowness that escalates to a frantically fast thrash before descending back into the miserable bowels of darkness again; a fascinating and exciting album opener.
The excitement continues with, 'Goat Skull Crown', D-beats and crashing cymbals descend into the dark and doom laden with a fabulous vocal segment midway before rising back up to some "fast as hell" death Metal that at times takes on a very blackened edge.
'Transient Passage' has some wonderfully terrifying elements as well as being and insanely long at eight minutes, a demonstration of stamina, to play with this much intensity for that long.
'Ascendance' has a wonderfully diabolical opener, the overtone of which continues across the track and an intense drum build midway marks the point where the guitars break into a battle.
'Sepulchral Rites' opens to a classic death Metal galloping pace, a great guitar segment in the first half marks a brief dark decent of the mood and tempo, the vocals are insane with excellent tortuous screams littering its length, another very atmospheric and exciting track.
Title track 'Black Death Horizon' is another that opens with a highly sinister feel, creating a dark and intense atmosphere to the subsequent pulsating and at times intensely fast rhythms and the final Track, 'Churning Magma', is an intense instrumental finale of dramatic drums and intense guitars that drops away to a simple yet effective drumbeat, a dramatic album ender.
A superb album, you really should, in the words of the band, "Render your soul to the Black Death Horizon!"