Balmog “Vacuum” (War Anthem Records)
This is my second review for a recent release from War Anthem Records, and I’m very quickly getting to know what they (the label) are all about. Loud, noisy Metal, in your face and quite partial to sounding like the bloodiest of all wars.
And with this release, the third Balmog album amongst quite a prolific back catalogue of splits, demos and EP’s, they’ve a band that borders on insanity… well, that’s how it sounds to me.
The band pics are pretty mental looking, and the opening intro, “Qui immolatus iam non moritur …” sounds like 2 different songs doing battle. And from there, this frantic form of Black Metal (it lacks the grandiose feel of Scandinavia, so frantic is my best shot) feels like it’s going to unleash the mother of all rages. It’s slightly disjointed, but intentionally so. Disharmonic is the over-used expression. But this is more like a loose cannon, just waiting to explode. Like a maniac that explodes into rage… and there’s that word again, rage.
Black Metal has often been accused of sounding like a jar of angry wasps… so smash that fucker on the floor and prepare for the worst.
In amongst the chaos, the band still find time to slow things down with the menacing and wonderfully mid-paced, “Vigil of the Blinds”… but the song doesn’t stay still for long as the second half of the song speeds up, but is quite restrained compared to some of the other numbers.
For the most part though, this is powerful Black Metal. And from the madness I was expecting, the album actuals levels off and gets more mature as it progresses. Which is good, as so many bands top load albums, with all the best songs at the beginning.
Vacuum is quality from start to finish, with the finale of “… sed semper vivit occisus”, probably just edging it as my favourite song.
And the album (obviously) comes highly recommended