31 Oct 2016

Fathomhell: "Non Pietatem Erit"

Somewhat accomplished black metal meanderings
Enveloping their core of black metal in a burdening cloak of cold atmosphere, Fathomhell from Spain at first seem pretty average. Starting out in 2010, it wasn't before 2012 that the release of their first demo EP - Non Pietatem Erit - would see the light of day. Where the Spanish trio awaken curiosity is with their tasteful but sparse use of synths and carefully programmed drums.

More often than not programmed drumming is a result of laziness or the inability to find a suitable drummer, and in most cases the choice to use a drummachine - whether it is by concious choice or by necessity - is aggravating in the way it is carried out. In a few instanses the simplistic inhumanity inherent in this cold, mechanical approach adds another dimension to the music, as is the case with groups such as Darkspace. And with Fathomhell, their programmed drum tracks feel natural in relation to the compositions and well thought through so as to not impair the integrity of the band's sound.

"It poses a few brief glimpses into the more melodic side of the genre,"

There is much more to Non Pietatem Erit, however. Their sound is brought forth with a strong traditional approach to the black metal genre, but without leaning too decisively on any regional sound or trend. It poses a few brief glimpses into the more melodic side of the genre, followed by deluges of distortion and blast beats, all neatly arranged into immaculate sequences. Illusions of Death reaches for a titanic magnificence, sporting one of the group's most ambitious riffs, while Devours the Light, Eats the Soul follows a more traditional path with unrepentent grit.

Fathomhell's expression is that of an ambitious band, but their comfort zone is narrow. Even when they're adventurous they're still clinging to the same vestiges of half-melodic black metal, and while the EP is well-crafted, it feels like the band is playing it safe with something musically inoffensive. Only rarely does Fathomhell break the veil of innocuousness, and these sparesome moments feel as though they should play a bigger role in the grand scheme of things.


Released in 2012 independently


No comments:

Post a Comment