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A Grim Offering - 84%

hellhippie, March 10th, 2009

Bestial Raids are an obscure black metal band from Poland with various releases out . What initially attracted me to purchase some of this band's discography was in their name . Everyone needs to discover a band from somewhere and this is how I found out about these maniacs . This split 7" with Poland's Hellish is a strange match up being one band is black metal and the other is death metal with black metal tendencies .

First off is the Bestial Raids side . This band is very "necro" and raw sounding . The guitar sound contains your standard raw black metal sounding grittiness . Although the riffs this band displays are much more than your run-of-the-mill common bargain basement black metal fare . This band is heavy and unique and it is very apparent even on a quick listen . They tune down, way down, which gives it a very old school feeling . There is none of that majestic sounding stuff in here and in my eyes that's what black metal is all about . The song structures are brilliantly constructed and never get boring ranging from raging speed to almost doom-like slowness all the while keeping that evil dirty black vibe going . The vocals are guttural and grimy and almost sound like early Blasphemy from Canada at times while still holding their own uniqueness as well . The drummer is dead on every second of the recording and adds a rawness to the recording of his own . Now the bass does get slightly drowned out in the production but as most raw black metal fans are used to this it doesn't take away from the recording one bit . Overall this band is extremely unique in a genre that has had everything done to it from organs and pan flutes to grandiose sounding orchestra's and majestic sounding choruses . I love my black metal raw and evil and this band most certainly should be looked up by anyone that feels the same way, they are worth it .

Onto the Hellish side . Hellish are a little quirky but not in a soft fluffy stupid way more in an old school crossover-death-thrash way . The first thing noticed about this band is their speed, these guys are blazing fast in the first track "Deathblast" and the sound is very "old German thrash sounding" but have their own sound completely . The vocals are very reminiscent of a mix of early Schmier from Destruction and Mille from Kreator at other times . Now don't get me wrong this guy is no copycat vocalist though, as he still has his own feel and vibe . The guitar sound is also (you guessed it) very German thrash sounding as well and the riffs are played with technicality and speed but don't lose any heaviness due to the technicality . This band was obviously influenced by the old German greats and it absolutely shows throughout all their songs . I also love the old thrash greats as this band does and they play their stuff well . The bass is thin sounding on this band's side and the production is much cleaner than the Bestial Raids side so it shows a little more here . This is a good band as well and I look forward to hearing more from them . Hopefully they won't get any cleaner sounding or more technical because they would most definitely be on the edge of losing their heaviness .

Overall this is an excellent split from one amazing band "Bestial Raids" and one good band "Hellish" and is worth looking up if your a raw black metal fan or an old school blackened thrash fan . Bestial Raids are what black metal bands should have always been; ugly raw brutal and sick with great catchy riffs and a vicious presence . If you want to hear orchestra's, organs and pan flutes go in to your local dentists office and turn up the god damn radio . Better yet just become a door man at a fancy hotel and leave the underground to people that know what heavy is like Bestial Raids .