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What with your Diocletians, Witchrists, Heresiarchs and so forth, New Zealand has its fair share of blasphemous war metal in the Black Witchery and Blasphemy mold. However there is also this kickass band, whom I saw absolutely kill it at the Siamese True Metal Festival in Bangkok last year. Exordium Mors take a wilder, apocalyptic approach to their frenzied brand of extreme metal, equal amounts charging black metal and rabid thrash riffs.
Sacrifice, Perish and Demise features one of the sexiest covers I've seen this year, by this Kiwi dude who also illustrated the new Heresiarch record. In addition to a re-recording of a concert fave and a cover, ya get two new songs with this promo, 'Sign of Judas Liege' and 'Ancestors Call'.
The former is a convincing contortion of squiggling tremolo abuse and thumping blast beats. The vocals are absolutely filthy, piercing, poisonous shrieks and the bass a boisterous, galloping presence beneath the carnage. I do like how that opening track oozes directly into 'Ancestors Call', pouring malevolently into a bleak rush of frosty Scandinavian riffs. Scourge's vocals sound pretty tortured on this number, showing his range a bit more.
There's also a spruced up reiteration of their eponymous song, and I reckon I prefer this over the original. There's a lot of depth to the sort of compositions you get with this band, and the improved sound makes this bad boy even more gripping. Then it all ends with a cover of Venom's 'Black Metal', with a bunch of blast beats, extra madcap solos and a fairly amusing take on the famous retching finish. Which I kinda like, because everyone covers this song and nothing will ever touch the original, but at least this one has its own feel.
The mix is decent enough, still not quite heavy enough to make the more epic, deliberately paced riffs on a track like 'Sign of Judas Liege' truly crushing, but with more clarity and thrust than earlier efforts like Serva Ad Mors. It doesn't need to sound that much work in terms of the guitar tone, but some more bottom end would be nice.
The Kiwi scene has come on a fair old bit and these guys are proof. The band obviously has a knack for writing these expansive, elaborate extreme metal opuses, cramming all manner of twisty leads and abrupt pace changes in without missing a beat. Just needs the production knocking up another notch and bam!