NOCTERNITY - "En Oria" reviewed 020716
This is the debut cd from NOCTERNITY, an Athens based band formed back 1997 by Khal Drogo (Guitars & Vocals), one year later Merkaal from ORDER OF THE EBON HAND joined the band and togheter with LETHE from SEPTIC FLESH and Cygma they recorded this cd called "En Oria". Due to some problems with their old label the release got delayed now but last year it came out on ISO666 releases. And how does it sound then? Truly AMAZING... this is the best stuff I've heard from HELLAS in a long time. The music is fast glorious black metal with some 6/8th drumming and keyboards. I'm usually not a fan of keyboard based black metal but this sounds raw and evil even though the keyboards are there maybe in some NOKTURNAL MORTUM way or something. The riffs and musicianship are both great with some great guitar solos here and there. My favorite song is "Qeen of the deep" which has everything that great black metal song should have. This IS the most promising band in Black Metal Hellas today... A must buy!!!
INVOCATION - "Lonesome Was The Last Journey" reviewed 020716
At last a new INVOCATION release... time has fled but here it is; "Lonesome Was the Last Journey". This is actaually a compilation cd with songs from 1993-1997 so you really now that this is classic stuff... Even my old favorite "Shadows over Innsmouth" from The Medieval split is here but in an even stronger version. You really cannot blame INVOCATION for not releasing anything earlier as mainman Aithir have had quite much to do in bands such as LEGION OF DOOM and NAER MATARON So... what has happened since their Ars Moriendi demo? First of all they've improved as musicians a lot. And all songs hold a very high standard and the ones that stick out and even are better are "Lust & Vison", "Garden of Dreams" and of course "Shadows over Innsmouth". It's the typical semi-melodical INVOCATION sound on the cd with some clean guitars, a little keyboards and the killer black metal riffs... Also the sound quality is quite good, not clinical mastered but it suits the music. So should you buy the album? OF COURSE!!! This is a perfect chance for you who haven't heard INVOCATION to get involved with this great band...
NAER MATARON - "Skotos Aenaon", Black Lotus Records reviewed 010925
I was really expecting a new Naer Mataron album as their first one (Up from the ashes) is a modern classic in Hellenic Black metal history. So how is it? Well the first impression isn't as great as the first album, but still it's good. The first that strikes you is the sound quality which is far from as good as earlier, a little weak, and the drums almost dissapear sometimes. But on the other hand there are still these classic Naer Mataron mega-riffs that makes you shiver, really impressing, especially the fast middle riff in the title track "Skotos Aenaon" which is so fucking great. The line-up is still the same as on the debut, and why do you want to change a winning concept, although there are only pictures of the headhonchos, Morpheas and Kaiadas in the cd-booklet. The cd contains 8 songs and an intro, most of the songs are really good as I said before it is only one song that is a little bit annoying and too much Norway for my taste, that's "In honor of the wolf" and I don't like it. Overall it's a good Black metal album, although it gets a lower grade due to the poor sound quality
SEPTIC FLESH - "Revolution DNA", Holy Records reviewed 000406 by Christos/Sauron
Absolutely brilliant! If you are familiar with the previous wroks of Septic Flesh then you will hear an album that's far more mature than anything they have done in the past. Gone is the deathmetal and the female vocals but the significant Septic Flesh touch is still intact. And the fact that they now have Lethe from Order of the ebon hand playing drums in the band only makes the sound thicker and better. Songs like Science, DNA and Revolution are performed with power and precision that will force you to hit play on you cd-player to listen to the album one more time. The vocals are a duel between Spiros and Sotiris which blend with the perfect contrast. The guitar harmonies are as good as ever and the leadguitar work has improved. It's also one of the first albums to be recorded in the new Fredman Studio in Gothenburg and it's just the perfect sound for Septic Flesh. If you haven't already bought this cd, I then recommend that you do so instantly as I name this: Greek album of 1999, thus, resulting in an almost perfect score.
EHTERIAL - "Om Santhi", Unisound Records reviewed 000119
I think that this is ETHERIAL's debut, I heard their 10" lp "Dominion" a few years ago and I wasn't impressed at all. This actually sounds quite the same, but I think these songs are a little better. Some riffs really kill, you like oldschool thrash and stuff. But on other parts it sounds like shit especially some keyboard parts which suck big-time. So you might that think I don't like this all, but something excites me. Some parts really are brilliant. Like the song "Fields of Emptiness" which is really great. Another thing about the cd is that is not so good is the sound. Really awful rehearsal place sounding drums and guitars. I don't think I mentioned before what kind of metal they play. It's ome kind of at most times slow death metal with keyboards, really underground I think. Anyway some might like this even though I don't.
Sum Up: 2.1
EXHUMATION - "Dance Across The Past", Holy Records reviewed 991207
Oh Yes!! How good this album is. Defenitely one of the best of all death metal albums 1998. Totally crusching. I know it's quite late to review this cd now as they soon will release their new cd. The cd is record at Fredman Studio in Sweden which means it's killing sound, really powerful and clean. I didn't really think that EXHUMATION would create a better album than their debut "Seas of Eternal Silence" which to me is one of the best death metal albums ever. But the question is if this one is even better, maybe it has a lot to with the sound which is far more better, but I don't know. Well this is really good performed death metal just like the former cd with tons of super-riffs performed by maybe the best musicians in Greece today. Killer musician-ship is what you get and especially the solos and drumming really keeps you going. Some parts of female vocals can also be heard, performed by Kimberly Goss, I think she has been a member of ANCIENT if I remember correctly? Well eight songs of first-class death metal is what you get plus a cover of SEPULTURAS "Territory" from the tribute-cd "Sepultural Feast".
Sum Up: 4.2
EN GARDE - "Comedia De L'Arte", Throne Productions reviewed 991207
This was the first release from the Cyprus based label Throne Productions, and what a release. The cd starts off with a killing cover of Handel's "Ah Mio Cor", and the rest of the cd follow in the same vein except for the song "Summer" which totally suck. Anyway the other hold so high quality that you can forgive them. The music is by the way doomy metal with both male and female vocals, both vocal-parts excellent performed and some of the female ones really kills. Some keyboards appear too which gives a more doomy sound to the cd which was recorded in Praxis back in 1996. The sound quality is good and powerful and in my opinion the best songs are "The Secret" and "A Wish". Check it out if you like doomy metal.
Sum Up: 3.9
THE ELYSIAN FIELDS - "We... The Enlightened", Wicked World Records reviewed 991207
They now added a "The" in front of their name, I guess there are some bands calling themselves Elysian Fields, so it might be a smart decision. I think this cd was released in the spring of 1999, Ok I know it's late for review but hey, here it is anyway. They have changed label from Unisound to Wicked World, seems like quite smart too as you never know where you have Unisound. "We... the Enlightened" was recorded in Praxis Studio, and the sound is really good but I really don't like the drum-sound. It sounds really midi-drums even though it says that Vangelis plays the drums, hmm I wonder if that's true. Well 'nuf shit talked... The music follow in the same direction as their killer debut "Adelain" and you soon get in their special atmosphere. It reminds me sometimes of DISSECTION and other Swedish Death/Black bands, especially in songs like "Until the Night..." and "Arcana Caelestia". If you like their first cd or any other way around you should really give this cd a listen, even though it doesn't satisfy my senses completely just to hear the great interlude riff in "Arcana Caelestia". Totally crushing.
Sum Up: 3.4
DARK NOVA - "1999 (A Step Beyond...?)", Seven Music
DARK NOVA is back after some in silence. This cd was released in the summer of 1999, and it's quite good really. Maybe I don't think that it's as good as the Greek Metal Media thinks (got a killer good review in Metal Hammer), but anyway... Death metal like music with good clean vocals. Some of the music really kills like the pre-chorus riff of "1999", which is awesome, reminds a little of KING DIAMOND. This cd like the ASPHODEL one is recorded at Feedback Studio. Also here the sound is good except for the drums which are far too "click" sounding and rehearsal-place like. Otherwise this is a nice metal album which you ought to check out if you like riffbased metal. As this is quite something like a veteran group, you hear that all musicians know what they're doing, well played and tight.
Sum Up: 3.8
ASPHODEL - "Floatin' In Nowhere", self-financed reviewed 991207
This mini-cd from ASPHODEL from Nea Smyrni, Athens which follows up their earlier demo "Loom of Sounds" follow quite in the same direction as the demo, but the cd is better I think. Four songs of mid-tempo doom metal with female vocals and violin is what you get. Well performed but nothing new I must admit. The cd was recorded in Feedback Studio, never heard of it before, but the sound is good for a Greek studio I think. This is really not my music style, and maybe I should have let someother review this cd. Nothing more to say.
Sum Up: 3.0
ANGELO PERLEPES MYSTERY - "s/t", Unisound Records reviewed 991207
This is actually the first stuff I ever heard of the quite known cult group MYSTERY. The music is in the 1980's power metal vein and reminds quite a lot of old HELLOWEEN to me. As usual when you listen to power metal, you know that you get well performed music, and this is no exception. The seven songs has class and the vocals and the guitar solos as well as some riffs totally kills. It is though nothing new or ground breaking but if you like power metal with sing along choruses you should check this out. The best song according to me is "Burning Eyes" with a killer main-riff with sweeping and stuff.
Sum Up: 3.7
GODBLOOD - "Those Funeral Times", Throne Productions reviewed 991115
GODBLOOD is the boss of Throne Productions own band, Deceased, and they play thrash metal with death/black vocals. The music is really oldschool with great riffs, quite basic slow drums and so on. The cd contains eight metal songs and an acoustic outro. The compositions are real good as I mentioned, but the sound quality on this cd is really tame and not so powerful as it should have been. One of the songs, "A Funeral" is earlier already released on the split 7" ep with MACABRE OMEN, but now it's re-recorded and sounds really much better. If you have heard that 7" ep you understand how this sounds like as it follows in the same trail. The musicians are good but nothing exceptional, but this is a quite old release so they might have become better now.
Sum Up: 3.5
NIGHTFALL - "Diva Futura", Holy Records reviewed 991115
"Diva Futura" is NIGHTFALL's latest effort and has been out for a while as usual on the french label Holy Records. The line-up is the same as on the great mini-cd "Electronegative", ie Efthimis and Mike from the old line-up and the new additions Mark Cross on drums and Phil Anton on guitars. The music is not like the early NIGHTFALL, no, it follow more in the direction of "Electronegative". All the death-metal vocals are gone, the music is more heavy than ever and the songs are shorter and more intense with a lot of solos and sample inlays. You can call it "hit-like". Well is it any good then? Well, there are some songs songs that really kill like "The Sheer Misfit", "Licked One's Iced Lips" and "My Traitor's Kiss" but the overall impression is not too good I must say. Ok, all songs are wellperformed, good sound quality and so on but... Maybe it's wrong with me as I think that many of you might like the cd. Check it out of you like the heavy NIGHTFALL hit-songs.
Sum Up: 3.4
SATELLIGHT - "Reflection", self-financed reviewed 991114
SATELLIGHT started out as a one man band where everything was handled by Elias Kritikos a Greek who lives in Norway. It's very hard to label the music of SATELLIGHT, as it's quite special. Well, first of all it has no traces of metal in it. No this is mostly instrumental music with piano, strings, guitars, some drums and so on. And on some of the last songs there are some singing too, and Elias mentioned that the new songs will contain more singing. The songs are very atmospheric and beautiful, and you get into a nice mood while listening to them. It suits perfect for only background music when reading or you can just listen, and from time to time you hear yourself say; "damn this is good". The "Reflection" cd contains 14 songs and all the music is completely laid down by keyboard, and I must credit Elias and say he plays everything with such feeling and doesn't sound too much synth about the guitar like it usually does. You can order the cd directly from Elias, just write an e-mail and ask about the price as I don't have a clue. email@example.com
Sum Up: 3.7
TERRA TENEBRAE - "Subconscious", Black Lotus Lotus Records reviewed 991111
TERRA TENEBRAE is kind of an allstar project with Gothmog from THOU ART LORD (gods), Makis from NECROMANTIA (killers) and Vassilis who I don't remeber which plays with at the moment. Well what does it sound like? Neither like THOU ART LORD or NECROMANTIA I must say. No more like late 90's black metal from Norway. The cd starts of very promising with "count the time" which is an excellent black metal song, also next few songs are really good. But after that something happens, the last songs are far from as good as the first ones. That's quite sad as I really like the first tunes. I must say that it would have been better to wait for some time so that all song were in the same style, or they could have released the fast songs as a mini-cd and the slower on another. The musicians of course when we talk about bands of this caliber do their stuff like it's supposed, good and with no problems at all. The vocals of Gothmog are good as always. The sound production is very black metal, quite good, but the midi-drums sounds too much midi, maybe that was meant to be that way? Layout and cover is the best from the greek scene for some time I must admit. Killer planetary layout.
Sum Up: 3.2
PHANTOM LORD - "In Twilight World", Black Lotus Lotus Records reviewed 991111
PHANTOM LORD is a unknown band to me. Never heard of them until the summer of 1999 when I bought the cd "In Twilight World". PHANTOM LORD play a quite melodic, technical heavy/thrash metal with real sing along heavy metal choruses. All musicians are killers with their instruments and personally adore the guitarist Yannis which plays so fucking good and with such good feeling like they did in the 80's. All the riffs are very good, some with sweeping and scales etc. The vocals of Vasilis are in a clean heavy metal way and at most parts good. Also the drummer Angelos and bassist Rich do their thing great. If you like "hit-like" thrash with clean vocals, monster solos and effective tightness I can recommend this cd. The package and layout are quite good with a nice cover but in the booklet with lyrics it looks quite quite shaggy. The sound production is quite harsh but it fits the music good.
Sum Up: 3.9
IRON YOUTH - "Dürch das Volk : Mit dem Volk : Für das Volk", Hate Records reviewed 991109
This is the only release from IRON YOUTH I have heard. It is from 1998 and the music is national socialistic "hate core" with anti-semitic/whitepower lyrics. Eventhough this is not kind of music I must say that I admire IRON YOUTH for all their anger and hate they can put in on one cd. I don't know which all the members of the group but I can say that a few of the greek metal elite are involved. So of course you get quality music. As I said it's hardcore style music and add some screamy vocals and a lot of backing screaming you can figure out how it sounds. The cd is released by the German label Hate Records. I don't where you can buy this as I got my copy from a friend at www.nordland.net, but it's worth looking for if you like ns metal. All lyrics are unfortunately not printed in the booklet as it's quite hard laws about anti-semitic propaganda in Germany, but if I remember correctly all lyrics except two or three are there. The best songs are "Axiom", "Just Say Forbidden", "To Him" and "After The War". Also I must add that some of the artwork in the booklet are censored too.
Sum Up: 3.6
DESCEND - "Beyond Thy Realm of Throes", Black Lotus Lotus Records
Yes! At last killer thrash from EPIDEMIC but now they have changed their name to DESCEND and has signed with Black Lotus records. This new full-length has a lot to give. As usual the great riffing, the solos, but now even more death-thrash than EPIDEMIC always has delivered us. This sound like thrash from the later middle of the 80's with a little more death metal touch. And it reminds quite a lot of the glory days of KREATOR. This is so fucking heavy that you must hear it yourself to understand Especially when songs have heavy metal chorus' it kills. Also the sound is dirty like it is supposed to be with thrash metal, especially the guitars sound this way. The cover and artwork are very nice too with great colours. Well I can recommend all thrash and death metallers to listen give this cd a listen.
Sum Up: 4.0
CROMLECH - "The Fall Of Christianity" demo-cd 1999
When I got this cd in my hands I thought because of the cover and pictures that this would be ultra-primitive black metal. Yes it's primitive but not really much, no there are acoustic guitars here and there and whispers sometimes. And two or three killer-riffs too! The three songs are a couple of minutes each which suits quite fine. Some arrangements maybe could have been worked a little more on... But on the whole this is a entertaining black metal demo. This is like many greek black metal today recorded in Studio 5 with Gregory as producer. Because of all bands recording in Studio 5 CROMLECH doesn't sound too original unfortunately. But fans of semi-primitive blackness should check this out.
Sum Up: 3.3 (for a demo)
CROMLECH contact: Cromlech, Samou 26, Xaidari 12461, Athens, Greece
CELESTIAL SCREAM - "Haec Dies" demo-cd This three song demo starts of with an excellent keyboard/piano intro which impresses me a lot. Then when the first real song starts, "The Harrowing of Hades" starts I can hear me speak to myself: "Yeah... This is Heavy...". Also the last song very powerful with very fast drumming which is always welcome. Actually this is really good. I would call it Heavy Black Metal or something with a lot of melodies, leads and killing majestive keyboard and piano work. Also long instrumental parts with with heavy riffs appear. All members are good at their instruments and this demo gives a proffessional impact on me. It is recorded in Studio 5 which we all know are good studio for these matters. I don't know what this demo-cd cost but I guess 7-8 USD. Write to them and ask.
Sum Up: 4.0 (for a demo)
CELESTIAL SCREAM contact: Pavlos Houliaras, Damassipou 23, 15 773 Zografou, Athens, GREECE
THE BLOODCULT - "Night's Plutonian Shore", Unisound Records
The first that strikes me is that the members are corpsepainted so when you see the cover and inlay you expect some primitive black metal. But no... What is this then? Goth! Well... Medieval Demon members that are trying to play vampyric goth/doom doesn't sound like a rather good idea, huh? No actually it isn't. Some songs are quite nice even though that this is not my fave kind of music. After a long church organ intro which could been taken from the MEDIEVAL DEMON cd the first real song starts... And it's kind of nice. All vocals are in a clean gothic way and the drums are made with midi. A lot of strings are used also via midi and the guitar sound is quite soft sometimes and scratchy other times. But most of this record is too slow for me and contains too little metal. The best song of this album is "Kissing Her Wounds". It sounds quite Industrial in the beginning then turns to Synth-pop from the 80's to end with hell knows what. No... This wasn't too good.
Sum Up: 2.5
ACID DEATH - "Pieces Of Mankind", Metal Mad Music
ACID DEATH is back! After the problems with their military service they have now released the really good cd "Pieces of Mankind" on Metal Mad Music. This record follows up the earlier "Apathy Murders Hope" 7" single and "Misled", the split-Lp with Spains AVULSED. And what does it sound like. You don't have to worry... As usual with ACID DEATH you get the killer riffs, the monster guitar solos, the excellent bass-lines and the complex drums. Together with the fantastic skillfull and tight musicians. Also ofcourse they have many weird inlays in the music and you ask yourself: "What the Hell...". I think that ACID DEATH is one of the few bands which make this kind experiments and make it sound great. Many great keyboard parts are on the record too which gives a more complete and creepy sound. Well last thing I can say i maybe that All ACID DEATH fans shouldn't miss this for anything in the world as you won't get dissapointed. To the others I can recommend you to listen to the cd first before buying it as some might find it too weird?
Sum Up: 4.5 (for an ACID DEATH fan), 3.8 (for the others)
SWAN CHRISTY - "One With the Swan", Black Lotus Lotus Records
This is a record that take some time to get into. When first got it I hated it, I donīt know why really, I thought it was too cheesy? Most of the songs are connected to eachother which creates a great concept. Well the music of SWAN CHRISTY is some kind of Gothic metal I guess, but itīs far from anything I have heard before. The things that are special with SWAN CHRISTY is the using of a lot of piano, keyboards and violin. ALso there are super marvellous solos and top of the line vocals, both male and female. The female singer is no other than Natalie Rasouli from SEPTIC FLESH. When you hear their name; SWAN CHRISTY, you might think that this would be an exact copy of MY DYING BRIDE (of course Iīm thinking about their second full length "Turn Loose the Swans) but this isnīt the case. No except for that itīs clean vocals, violin and piano, but they doesnīt even use it in the same way as the goth/doomers from England. Swan Christy has also very majestive and epic keyboard parts with the singing lying over. I mean some songs doesnīt even use the guitars. That makes the record more varied and even better. I wonder how they will sound on the next record? Even better?
Sum Up: 4.0
ASTARTE - "Doomed Dark Years", Black Lotus Lotus Records
You have probably heard about ASTARTE. They are said to be the first all female black metal band. This is their debut cd out on Black Lotus Records which follows their (I think) only demo. After a long moody, good keyboard intro, the first real song starts; "Voyage of Eternal Life" and is this good or what? If you, like me, like primitive black metal with lengthy songs and raw vocals, you are going to love this. Very cool riffs with keyboards on top gives a great atmosphere. Also thereīs a lot of great keyboard bridges and clean guitar parts which make the music even better. The vocals sounds as usual and could have come from any man in the black metal scene. The three women of ASTARTE are: Kinthia - guitar/vocals/keyboards, Tristessa - bass/keyboards, Nemesis - guitar/keyboards. The session drummer is called Aivar. "Doomed Dark Years" is a good record with long songs which also results in long playing time which is good. The sound of the black metal they play is quite norwegian I must admit but theyre not aping any band and I think ASTARTE are quite original. And the fact that behind the music there stand three hellenic women doesnīt make it any worse. I want to hear more like this.
Sum Up: 3.8
AIMOPTYSI - "Searching the Myths of the Past", DR Recordings
Bass! All I can say is that these guys like bassguitar. A lot of bass chorus intros and a lot of bass in the mix. Unfortunately it doesnīt sound that good when the guitar hardly can be heard because of all the bass and the high deathy vocals. One thing that you can hear is the guitar solos although they also ought to be higher in the mix. Also thereīs some cool tradeoffs between the guitar and the bass in the solos. Some might say that the singing is a little like Spiros of SEPTIC FLESH but of course not as extreme although the singing of John "Archon" Zaminos is really good I think. Some parts of the clean singing could be discussed though. There are some really catchy good riffs on the guitar which you actually can hear like the intro riff of "Pyriflegethontas". Most of all the lyrics speak about the rivers of Hades and theyīre quite good I must say. Besides of John, AIMOPTYSI are Alekos Bafitis (guitars), Philip Bouramis (bass, acoustic guitars, synths). The drumming is handled by a drum machine which sounds ok. They also have some guest lead guitarists like Tassos Spiliotopoulos from the thrashers FLAMES and Achilles Hilmi. Well if the mix had been better this could have been a killer Death Metal album, now itīs just another in the crowd with bad production. I really would like to hear AIMOPTYSI with good production and maybe with real drums because I think it would suit their Death Metal better.
Sum Up: 2.7
MEDIEVAL DEMON - "Demonolatria", Unisound Records
MEDIEVAL DEMON is back! It was quite many years since I heard any new music from back then one of the best primitive black metal bands out of Hellas. The last I heard from them was their great split 7" with INVOCATION which totally kick ass. Back then it was extremely primitive and raw black metal which was performed. Yet today one can say itīs quite primitive but not as before. Also thereīs much better sound quality. Thereīs also more melodies than before and a lot of keyboards. Talking about keyboards, the record starts off with a great keyboard intro which is followed by the extreme black metal they play. Although they play extreme metal they donīt grind that much, and even it sounds brutal enough, that is good. Another nice thing is that they also have violin included in some songs which gives a great touch. MEDIEVAL DEMON consists of: Crimson Embrance - vocals, Moonstruck - keyboards, Count Lethaemon - guitar/bass, Maelstrom - drums. All of the musicians are good and they play good all together. The lyrics speak as usual about evil stuff like death, demons and women who are seductive and so on. The record is good after a few listens but it feels like something is missing. But then there are songs like "Spirits of the Dead", "Dark Widow" and "Demonolatria" which are totally awesome. Therefore itīs quite hard to set a grade on this cd. All I can add is that I like the pictures of the members a lot.
Sum Up: 3.9
DEVISER - "Transmission To Chaos", Two Moons/Mascot Records
This is a record which I has longed for, for quite some time must admit. DEVISER debut "Unspeakable Cults" was so good that I really expected something special from the follow up. And what do I think about the new record? Well, it doesnīt really sound like I thought would with monster-riffs ala "Unspeakable...". But itīs not bad anyway, it is more heavier know and with more keyboards. The riffs are simpler but good anyway, thatīs something a lot of bands would gain more respect in doing instead of some groups where the music drowns in all the harmonies. The line-up has changed a bit. The present is: Matt Hnaras - vocals/rhythm guitars, Nick Christogianis - bassguitar, Manos Hiotis - keyboards/lead guitars, Mike Tsempertzis - drums. It took me some time to get in to this record but now I like itīs heaviness, mighty keyboards and rockier parts. As usual with DEVISER all musicians are great and tight. Especially Mike Tsempertzis is really good behind the drums. Also the guitar solos are from time to time weird but great. Well the only thing I can add is that I also like the cover art a lot.
Sum Up: 3.8
NAER MATARON - "Up From the Ashes", Black Lotus Lotus Records
The record starts off with a great oldschool thrash riff which later follows by the usual black metal furiosity. But this is not like every other black metal act today. No this is real good with blends of norwegian sounding black metal, thrash and ancient hellenic tunes. NAER MATARON is a quite new band which I only think has one demo out and now this record on Black Lotus Records. The music is very good with harmonic riffs but not as cheesy as some norway crap and all of the musicians are very competent. All of the lyrics deal with ancient Greece and the Gods of the time. As most of the music is very fast black metal it is nice that have an ancient hellenic style song on the record. This song has only acoustic instruments and greek spoken vocals, very good in deed. The members are Morpheas: guitars/acoustic intruments, Aithir: vocals/drums (on this record Lethe plays the drums), Kaiadas: bass, Lethe: keyboards. In some songs there pops up an unexpected thrash metal riff which is good for the musical variation. The only that I really can complain on is the length of the record itīs only 36 minutes. Thatīs a little short I think. Anyway this is a very good record which yould ought to own.
Sum Up: 4.2
ORDER OF THE EBON HAND - "The Mystic Path to the Netherworld", Hypervorea Records
This is actually the first Iīve heard from this group. I have heard promising words about O.O.T.E.H. and when you hear this record you will see why. I donīt know how long this CD has been out but I saw it for the first time a week ago (beginning of May) in the record store and I bought it immediately. The line-up is: Lorthar - rhythm/lead guitars & backing howlings, Merkaal - bass guitar & lead vocals, Lethe - drums/percussion & synths & melodic vocals. If we first talk about the music, it is clear that these men listen to the Scandinavian scene but though theyīre not aping any band and they manage to come out with a quite personal sound. This is fast black metal with great melodic music, some heavy metal influences and good vocals. The material on the CD is quite old, itīs from 1995 and 1996 but still itīs good. Also the musicanship is great because all of the musicians knows what theyīre doing and masters their instruments with knowledge and skill. Something else thatīs good with O.O.T.E.H. is the melodic vocals of Lethe that often is lying over the usual black vox. And good solos, thatīs not so common in the black metal scene today, is it? The best song in my opinion is track no. 5, "Tears in Red" 10 minutes an 44 seconds of marvellous black metal, and good lyrics, I wonder if Lucio Fulciīs (dead master of gore) great movie "City of the Living Dead" helped them to come up with a title to the song. All of you who has seen the movie understand what I mean, to all others... see it today. "The Mystic Path of the Netherworld" is released by Hypervorea recs, a company which seems to release only good albums, ok that it is only their fourth that the label has released and with bands like LEGION OF DOOM, AGATUS, ZEMIAL and now ORDER OF THE EBON HAND, we all long after a Hypervorea tour through Europe, a tour like this is of course a economical problem, but isnīt time for rest of Europe to listen to the wonderful music of Greece live in concert too?
Sum Up: 4.0