|Metal: Cult Classics Pt. VIII|
Back again for another part.
This time there are a couple of inclusions of bands you've seen before in these lists, but only because I feel the albums in case are deserving of being brought to attention.
Ritual of Infinity
Compared to the immortal NYDM titans Suffocation, Immolation and Incantation, Morpheus Descends appear to be slightly overlooked. However, like their compatriots, despite belonging to the same geographic scene, Morpheus Descends provides the listener with their own take on one of extreme metal's most beloved subgenres. With riffs that are at once crushing, doomishly murky and evocatively surreal, the band manages to introduce you to a hellish netherworld. Ritual of Infinity is the band's undisputed classic.
A Velvet Creation
Together with At The Gates, Eucharist were one of the earliest bands to create a style that could be described as "melodic death metal". In that respect, their debut A Velvet Creation is closer in kinship to an album like The Red in the Sky is Ours than it is to the more catchy and straightforward old school melodic heavy metal with harsh vocals that passes for "melodeath" nowadays. Colorful, weird haunting instrumental work and riffs paint an almost occult sonic palette that takes its time to sink into you. Once it clicks, there's no turning back.
From the Lost Years
In this series, I discussed their classic Deathcult for Eternity release before. Now I think it's time to give the overlooked, but equally terrific From the Lost Years its due. Of all The Chasm's albums, a band known for their almost exotic approach to death metal, From the Lost Years is perhaps THE most exotic-sounding one of all. Long ever-changing compositions take you on a trip through a mystical realm of the dead that could never be created at any other place but the ancient Mexican lands.
|4||Order From Chaos|
"Wrong" is the word which comes to mind while listening to this album - and I do mean this in a positive manner. While listening to the strange brand of death metal present on Stillbirth Machine there's always a sense of "wrongness" present. As if something is going to transport you to a torture dungeon at any given moment. The instruments grind and churn yet twist and turn; the vocals seem to attack you in different manners from all sides. Unique, essential death metal.
One Foot in Hell
Cirith Ungol are one of 80's metal's greats and a large part of this status is attributed to the immortal King of the Dead album. That doesn't mean it's the ONLY classic work the band put out; so it's time to place the underrated One Foot in Hell in the spotlights. While seemingly "simpler" - the psychedelia is less present on this album - this is Cirith Ungol firing on all cylinders intensity-wise.
Another overlooked classic of 80's metal, Winter Kill is a strange oddity in the canon of USPM. Delivering equally in terms of hooks as well as completely off the wall songwriting.
Prophecies of a Dying World
Death/thrash cult classic and another band that provided a distinctively individual take on the style which hasn't really been recreated ever since. While the Lovecraftian influence is already apparent in the brilliantly written lyrics, more than anything it's the way the riffs seem to twist, slither and crawl that creates a certain atmosphere that would've made Howard Phillips proud.
Out of the Abyss
One of metal's most beloved cult bands and one that has already made a presence in this series as well. This time some attention is given to the underappreciated Out of the Abyss. Often described as Manilla Road's "thrash album" and undeservedly claimed as the "weaker" entry among Manilla Road's classic albums. Sure, for a thrash metal record it does give off a bit of a weird feeling, but hey..."weird"...that's Manilla Road for you. They've always been an odd band and this is no exception. From strangely paced thrashers like 'Whitechapel' to more ethereal and dreamlike compositions as "Return of the Old Ones"...this is another top notch entry in Manilla Road's discography.
Entombed before they became Entombed. Regarded as some of the greatest demo work in the history of metal, the brilliance that would later on be displayed with Left Hand Path and Clandestine was already on display in the Nihilist works.
Brave Yester Days
Fantastic mammoth compilation consisting of Katatonia's early death/doom EP's which had become lost treasures before this release. Featuring more of their brilliant and typically haunting and evocative compositions we know and love from the band's early work, Brave Yester Days is essential doom listening as far as I'm concerned.