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Nightmares set to music - 97%

natrix, January 17th, 2011

I really feel that modern death metal is lacking something. It could be due to pristine production with triggered drums and compression. Sometimes I find myself wondering what Vital Remains would sound like if they had stuck to their original formula of evil riffing, rather than endless cascades of blastbeats. Death metal, I feel, is not simply about wall to wall brutality. It is about evoking a disturbing atmosphere. Shub Niggurath certainly does that.

Granted, this, Shub Niggurath's second offering, is already over ten years old, it feels fresh. One could even go so far as to say that it is timeless. Whatever the description, this is bloody good death metal.

The first thing you'll really feel here is the horrific atmosphere. Endless Christ-bashing is a super trite subject, so luckily, Shub Niggurath have chosen Lovecraftian occultism as a lyrical subject. The music evokes visions of nameless abominations. There is a great emphasis on low end, churning riffs, which, when coupled with the semi-incomprehensible growling and labyrinthine song structures, makes The Kinglike Celebration unpredictable and all the more frightful.

The line-up here is a simple three piece consisting of Julio Viterbo (now in the Chasm), Oscar Clorio (most known from his work in Cenotaph), and maniacal vocalist, Arturo. This is a much different beast than the Chasm, with almost no melodies. Julio's soloing is twisted, atonal and bizarre. Arturo's not too far off from Daniel Corchado, utilizing at times the spoken/growled dual vocals. Oscar's drumming is top notch. There are quite a few blast beats on here, and they usually come in spurts. That keeps things from getting banal and at times, and at times, even gives an uneasy feel.

Most third world bands have shit production, either too muddy, or too clear. Not so here. The Kinglike Celebration is terrifically muddy, much like old Incantation. You can hear everything, possibly not with absolute clarity, but it gives a real nice touch of brutality.

This is real death metal here. Cult and twisted. Highly recommended.