Title: The Proclamation
Label: Sentient Ruin Laboratories
Release Date: 4 December 2020
Format Reviewed: High-quality Digital Recording
Sentient Ruin Laboratories do seem to have a knack for releasing music that sounds like a horde of demons calling up from the abyss, and on that note, let me introduce you to Germany’s Voreus and their debut mini-album “The Proclamation”. Spanning five tracks and 24 minutes, “The Proclamation” is an infernal marriage of Black and Death Metal, with an evil, cacophonous tone that really does sound like some demonic engine grinding the souls of the damned and spewing them out from the depths of pit in a putrid swamp… or something along those lines.
After the opening track “Trisagion” sets the mood with two minutes of what sounds like a brooding, dark incantation, the band really get down to business with “Progeny of Fire” which indicates what is to follow: aggressive, hammering percussion, monstrous growled vocals and a murky blend of guitars and bass, like a layer of throat burning smog. Heavy, primal and nasty at every turn.
If anything “Portals to the Dark Realm” is even heavier with lava-like flowing guitar riffing, and a certain chaotic feel to the slithering guitars, underpinned by insistent double bass on the drums. The sound is cavernous. When the band chooses to slow down, they stomp with remorseless intent, and when they speed up it’s like a lumbering beast smashing through the undergrowth of a cursed forest. This really does sound evil.
Not only is the intimidating blood-red eye of the cover art a perfect fit to this auditory assault, but so too the band names: Thousand Eyes, Void, Desmotes, Odrep and Assimilator. All elements are in keeping with this overall feeling of being drawn into a dark and harrowing domain. To be sure there is no sort of light at the end of this tunnel, with the title track another growling beast of petrol fumes and demon flames.
Final track “Descending into the Infernal Abyss” incorporates some very Black Metal sounding guitars, adding a satisfyingly ghoulish tone, while the drums hammer along at pace. Everything slows down to this slow, churning midpoint trudge and backing vocals wail like demon monks from a ghostly monastery.
“The Proclamation” is noisy, nasty and cavernous. Despite the unremitting, no-frills assault, there is something quite hypnotic about this and the more I listen, the more I pick little details of dissonance out from the chaotic mass. It’s lurking under the radar, but definitely worth checking out if you want something dark and hellish to make you feel like you might meet the devil on the road to night. Stay safe. 7.5/10 Tom Boatman
7.5/10 Victory is possible
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