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Sounds of Satanic Slaughter - 90%

Five_Nails, February 27th, 2017

“We shall enter together,” Virgil assures you as you examine the imposing metal fortification rising to meet the ebony sky. Crenelations atop the towers gleam in the glow of the flaming river's tributaries. Churning in concert with the sloshing river of eternal blistering lava is a thundering sound issuing forth from the gradually opening gates. Upon cloven hooves and clenching a horn of mead in his sharpened claws, Satan greets you as the guest of honor, the one whose fallen soul has been chosen this evening to join his newly formed legion. A force to topple empires is being built for the wars to come and you have set your mind to achieve the atrocities necessary to dissolve order into a chaos from which victory shall flourish. Belial thanks Virgil for his time and tasks him with finding another worthy warrior. Before the ceremony begins however, it is required that the unholy hymns have their time. Belial's bards ascend the stage. Lined with skulls and draped with rotten angel wings, it is the focus of attention as a hush falls over the crowd. With three cymbal crashes Blaspherian holds court and the sides of Satan's goat-like mouth slightly soften. Pleasure washes over his majesty's visage as the unholy cacophony erupts from walls of amplifiers.

'Pure evil' is a phrase that gets thrown around most often when first encountering the darkest and deadliest of metal's catacombs. It is a phrase that loses all meaning when meandering through dungeons and chambers finding similar assortments of corpses filled with arrows and flayed skeletons fastened to posts. It is a phrase that goes forgotten after some years in such an unforgiving environment but it is just as astonishing and bewildering when encountered in an unadulterated edition. Blaspherian's pure evil is as refreshing as it was bewildering the first time you traumatized your brain with a world drenched in bodily fluids, blanketed in tanned skin, and sustained by fresh thigh meat. “Enthroned In Blasphemous Triumph” frolics in that victory over virtue. A venerable spree of sacking besieged cities, this song has a victorious marching sound to it punctuated with moments of sheer panic as the citizens flee in terror ahead of Satan's armies. From this perspective, none of what is done in Satan's name can ever be considered a crime, but a happenstance giving cause to glory and a relished step on the road to conquest. 'Pure evil' is not simply found in partaking when horror knock's at an enemy's door. It is expected that it should bring you pleasure as well.

Blaspherian's garage band production, grandiose guitars, and viscous bass carve deep into mountain containing these catacombs. In this short half hour you pledge your soul to Satan, curse Christ and all he stands for, and embark on the unholy crusade to conquer Heaven and Earth. Gigantic double bass joins with bass guitar to hammer relentlessly into your chest, snare stomps on your beaten brain, and interchanges between groove and rapid assaults keep a constant pace forward while the mid range between both extremes is a quick march. Do not expect anyone here to whine about their feelings, leave your flowery solos and piano interludes at the door, and you'd better not be caught singing cleanly here if you want to keep your throat. There's blood to be spilt in pristine marble halls and Blaspherian will lead the way. Unabashed in their debauchery, Blaspherian's members aren't overly serious about what they're doing but the lack of convolution makes each song come across as brimming with conviction.

“Curse His Name” is the track to bet on. Opening with harsh and slow guitar notes, the bass bounces off the double kick. The earthy bass sound in this is absolutely crushing, accentuated by some guitar chugging, and made an anthem with the title chant. Within this first half a minute is already the template for a great slow piece of death metal, and it gets blown away by a headbanging assault. The riff at 1:24 pulls you up for air for a moment, and then hammers you back into the drowning pool of blood and piss with grinding snare. This is the sound of Christ's torture. The opening to “Curse His Name” bears many similarities to “Crusade Towards Unholy Deliverance”. The pummeling template is well arranged in the crushing New York style and when things get kicked into overdrive similarities to Immolation and Incantation are very apparent.

Blaspherian is the sort of over-the-top cartoonish and deliciously evil music that thoroughly accompanies any violent outburst of metal zeal. With oldschool simplicity, vibrant personality, and the reverberating gurgle barely able to be called production to go with it, this band exemplifies the atmosphere of evil while creating a perfect demonstration of the twisted music pure evil would spawn. Blaspherian is the kind of band that shows that a simple and straightforward approach, when done right, can be just as bewildering as the pomposity of technical virtuosos.

Death metal from the depths of Hell - 100%

hmi, February 24th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2010, CD, Deathgasm Records (Reissue)

Allegiance to the Will of Damnation is sinister, crushing, Incantation-style death metal. I mean, just look at the title to get an idea of what all is here. It’s mostly slow, swampy and suffocating; at times catchy; and sometimes hypnotic. Nothing but deep and practically monotonous gutturals accompany the music, and I don’t even think there’s a single solo. One-trick pony? Maybe, but it just works and it works perfectly.

No riff overstays its welcome. Every song flows together smoothly and so does the album as a whole. The funny thing is none of the riffs are particularly catchy or unique but they all come together so well. When this album finishes playing, I don’t remember most of what I heard but I remember it was heavy as fuck and I know I want to hear it again.

Blaspherian’s style is easily comparable to early Incantation. You like Incantation? Then you’ll love this. Do you like your death metal to sound like it arose from the tortured, putrid bowels of Hell? Great, me too. This album is one of few that sounds like what I imagine Hell sounds like. Is it heavy? As heavy as it gets. Is it evil? You’re damn straight. Is this Incantation worship? Pretty much, but who cares?

The only reason I might consider this less than a perfect album is because Infernal Warriors of Death managed to top it, but excellent is excellent is excellent. This is a must-have for Blaspherian fans and any fans of sick and evil death metal in general. Go listen to it, now.

Old school without being redundant - 92%

prozak, May 31st, 2009

Eschewing the search for slickness and "innovation" that has plagued death metal since the first hipster called it crude, Blaspherian evoke the roots of primal death metal while finding their own voice in the style. Using simple riffs reminiscent of the spawn of Morpheus Descends and Asphyx, this Texas death metal band make simple songs that alternate between grinding and picking up an infectious but not offbeat rhythm, making a cadence of doom descend over raw aggression.

In the tradition of Malevolent Creation, Blaspherian employ a number of one-chord rhythm riffs that ride an unsyncopated rhythm to create an atmosphere of inevitability. Riff styles resemble the early days of death metal, such that fans of American and European death metal bands will find something here, but these riffs are placed in songs that are simple in structure yet each structure is unique in configuration, as if adapted to the riffs themselves. Like all good death metal, each successive riff complements the previous riffs and puts them into a new context, giving the songs a feel like that of exploring caves at night.

Vocals resemble the occult rantings of Sadistic Intent or Resuscitator, and song pacing calls to mind the spirit of the aforementioned Asphyx. Some riffs are reminiscent of early Obituary, Infester and a slowed-down first album Deicide. While it does not work to distinguish itself in style, this music gains a voice of its own by how it combines the artifacts of the past and finds a new voice for them within that style.

Death fucking metal! - 88%

MosquitoControl, October 21st, 2007

Do yourself a favor and forget the last fifteen years of death metal. Forget the useless technicality, the reliance on unnecessary blastbeats, the stupidly pitch-shifted vocals, and the idiotic lyrics because that's death metal as a marketing ploy and sales oppurtunity. Remember instead when death metal was actually scary, when Deicide was not a punchline and Carnage was not a one-off supergroup. Remember the atmosphere invoked by the first Immolation and Incantation albums, the feeling one got from listening to Abhorrence or Possessed, because that's what Blaspherian brings to mind.

The sound is dirty, the guitars heavy and dense in a way usually associated with funeral doom or the crustiest grindcore, almost close in some ways to the legendary Sunlight Sound, but without any sheen or shine or clarity. The riffs are buried beneath an avalanche of distortion and gain, tuned low enough it's difficult to differentiate them from the bass. The drums sit back in the mix, and the bass drum doesn't sound triggered, having instead a thick, full, live sound that's largely been missing from death metal for the last decade. It's muddy without the individual instruments being indistinguishable, sludgy without being unlistenable, and best of all, evil as hell sounding.

But sound alone wouldn't make this a good album if Blaspherian didn't know how to write songs, something they are surprisingly adept at. "Prayer of Satanic Hate," is an amazing death metal song, starting with some speedy grind riffing before segueing into a slow chugging (not metalcore chugging, but good old-fashioned death metal-style) chorus, and then into some lurching crushing doom before the main riff kicks back in; a combination of the best of Onward to Golgotha and Dawn of Possession with a bit of Blessed are the Sick thrown in to keep things interesting. The whole album is full of the same sort of song writing, killer high speed thrashing mingled with tormentingly heavy slow doom, and best of all, evil as hell sounding.

It would be a disservice to call Allegiance to the Will of Damnation a throwback to the golden days of death metal, because this is no second rate imitative knock-off. This is death metal the way it's meant to be played-heavy, mean and evil as hell.