Review Summary: It appears 2010 was a good year for metal after all.
Profound Lore Records had produced an album for yet another mucky death metal act last year which was somewhat overlooked by many metal fans in favour of works from its brothers: Impetuous Ritual, Mitochondrion and Portal. To introduce a perspective into the fray (one year late) let me introduce you to Vasaeleth
, and their stunning debut album Crypt Born and Tethered to Ruin
All instruments and vocals (Judging by this album, responsible for most of Vasaeleth’s musical impetus).
Crypt Born and Tethered to Ruin
is, in short, occult as hell. With its brutally low guttural vocals, thick old school guitar riffs, and wall of drum beats working in the background, this low-production album invokes a dense and hellish atmosphere and imagery. Although you’d have to be deaf to not notice the resemblance between their low guttural vocals and thick guitars, and those of Incantation’s, Crypt Born and Tethered to Ruin
brings more to the table than just ripping off their fellow American legends by putting great emphasis on atmosphere (which makes this album sound ‘occult’). You could say they sound like an amalgamation of Incantation, Impetuous Ritual, and Funebrarum, perhaps.
Such comparisons have been made by music critics as Vasaeleth aren’t trying any groundbreaking ideas or inventing new sound structures here. This is as much a weakness as it is strength, for by choosing this /uninventive/ path, the album attempts to expand on established sounds and provide a more convincing experience for its listeners, to which due credit must be given. Another aspect of this album that faces the same situation is the fact that there is little emphasis on individual riffs which is again dependent on your tastes. By focusing on one sound style with no real catchy riffs and risking the chance of its music fading to the background, the album ensures consistency of its sound and amplifies the atmosphere, consolidating its densely sinister nature. Me, I’m certainly leaning towards the ‘strengths’ here, and besides, while these riffs may all sound murky and unprocessed, they are at no stage boring, and anyone with a decent attention span will have no trouble enjoying this album.
This is is some seriously good death metal guys, so I definitely recommend you fans of this murky low-fi type of death metal that haven’t checked it out to do so asap.