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PoBDZ3: A footnote now, but a good footnote - 80%

vrag_moj, July 4th, 2009

This is 2007 re-release of the 1993 EP by this Finnish band that had the tantalizing infamy of being contemporary and collaborative with Beherit. What this connection exactly is as follows: Sadomatic Slaughter on drums and Holocausto Vengeance collaborating on track 4 "Flowing Downwards" and 2 ambient tracks, one of which I suspect is featured in the live (in 93) version of "Flowing Downwards" featured as track 8. Old news now, but welcome for those that like myself may have had no pleasure to hear this band until now.

The EP is so good, that hearing those 4 tracks back in 93 would have been as enjoyable as it would have been annoying with no further material emerging until 2006, when the album recorded originally in 1996 finally came out. The style is a potent blend of early Celtic Frost and Beherit more melodic than the former due to the prominence of keyboards and cleaner, less perverse then the latter. The songs are delivered with a lot of heavy groove, very dynamic mid-paced drumming outlining the cleverly-arranged songs and always a distant, sad atmosphere. The production is extremely good for a BM band of this part of the 90's. Most of the vocals are clean, manly wails with the odd evil hiss here and there. Indeed this was quite something else, especially for the time it was released in and a great progression on the raw intensity of their debut demo. One of these tracks is presented here "Black Crucifixion" a primitive, grinding noise-fest ala Hellhammer and Blasphemy. Hearing the progression from that style into the EP and the album to follow with one song "Suomi Finland Saatana" presented here (looks to be an out-take though) is quite amazing. Another demo track from 1993 "Death Water" is in the same style of fucked-up black n roll. Not sure where this fits in the band's history, but it sounds more in the style of the EP - with sad sparse keyboards ringing out contemplatively behind the calmly-paced but raw track. Finally a slightly murky but fairly representative live recording of "Flowing Downwards" morbidly distorted, downtuned guitars, keyboards n all, bizarrely narrated by the characteristic clean vocals. The album thus ends on a dark dark note.

I guess, this is not so amazing now, due to the efforts of bands like Katatonia and Samael, who abandoned their Black Metal for a similar style, but arguably Black Crucifixion did it first. I'm not sure how influential they would have been, having languished in obscurity all those years. Nonetheless this is a fascinating release well-worth picking up, now that it is again available.

Originally published in Procession of Black Doom zine #3