Review Summary: RAW.GRIM.UNCOUTH. ENTER THY WOODS OV THE GRIM SOUTHERN ORANGE STATE.....
Would you like to have your face melted off? Would you like to enter the grim, desolate world of all that is necro and unholy? If so, listen to Horrid Cross. Horrid Cross is a raw black metal band from Florida who *** *** up in a keyboard free environment . By ***ing *** up I mean that Horrid Cross play misanthropic black metal free of pan flutes, synthesizers, Cascadian post rock imbued sequences and polished production values. This isn’t your mother’s Alanis Morissette record so *** off if your put off by the raw primal nature of Horrid Cross. 2 troo 4 u.
The material that I will be unearthing from the blasphemous crypts today is their second demo entitled Demo II. Their musical direction is pretty clear after hearing the blasting three minute opener IV. Gnarled screams? Check. Blitzkrieg riffing? Check. A deafening amount of distortion and reverb? Check. Punishing snare? Check. Horrid Cross embrace all that is ugly about black metal and wrap it up into one nice little package. Yet, through all the chaos and violence that erupts from this demo tape, Horrid Cross display a knack for constructing simple, cohesive tunes that are relatively easy to digest.
The guitars provide the bulk of the EP’s raw aggression with fast paced riffing patterns that invoke moments of Viking inflicted brutality. “V” opens up with a slower, more head bobbing approach, offering some variety and melody to the vicious uproar. Discordant notes and melodic tremolo picking are heard throughout the dense layers of distortion which helps keep things interesting. The Rhythm section is equally as sadistic as the guitar assault. At times buried under reverb, the drums still play a pivotal role in administering the audio bloodshed. Doublebass is quick and merciless, snare hits are hardhitting and cymbal crashes are equally as aggressive. It sounds to me that the drummer was hypnotically induced during this recording. Why? Because he gives a blistering, inhuman performance. As for the bass I don’t hear it. I don’t really give a daisy *** though. When the music is this good you don’t really need to be nitpicking for flaws.
Ten minutes of sloppy, simplistic and unsophisticated black metal is what you‘ll find on this EP. Horrid Cross will appeal to all the black metal purists out there who think bands are going to far out of their way to incorporate post-rock dynamics in their fifteen minute prog epics. This young Florida band represents modern black metal in the best of ways without sacrificing depth for aggression or aggression for depth.