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Modernization in Moderation - 83%

TheStormIRide, February 9th, 2018
Written based on this version: 2017, CD, Schattenkult Produktionen (Limited edition)

Forgotten Remains is the debut release from the Dresden-based black metal band Blodskut. Featuring a few scene veterans, Blodskut’s first offering is a rather punishing affair, yet the band displays a certain maturity and intrepid nature in their sound. While it would be easy to just call them a black metal band and leave it at that, as Forgotten Remains is clearly a tremolo-laden piece of second wave influenced black metal, the band has a penchant for constantly shifting tempos and changing things up at the drop of a hat. Amazingly, Blodskut is able to weave a consistent and highly convincing sound through the slithering songwriting.

After a short introduction, the band starts dispensing artillery with abandon. Fiery tremolo riffing with pummeling, near-inhuman drumming and vicious, throat grated screams leads the charge, though short, picked minor key segments and breezy atmospheric-tinged movements creep around every corner. It’s constantly evolving, although it consistently returns to acerbic black metal like clockwork. While a lot of their sound is derived from second wave black metal, some modernistic tendencies shine throughout; be it the climbing soloing and rhythmic Abbath-esque riffing during “Contra”or the chugging riffs and machine gun drumming that begin “Masked Souls”. This all combines to create a highly diverse, yet extremely cohesive sound that, despite borrowing heavily from the scene, crafts their own distinct sound.

Forgotten Remains is pretty striking for a debut. It boasts a solid production that allows everything to shine nicely while keeping the music sounding vicious and blackened. The band’s take on somewhat modern black metal mixed with atmospheric moments calls to mind a bit of mid-period Enslaved at times, though the band keeps things moving enough to bear only a passing resemblance to other acts. Despite the intensity and general heaviness of the album, it’s quite accessible and could probably score the band a fairly wide audience (as far as this type of black metal goes, that is). Constantly shifting gears and presenting a well thought out approach to their songwriting, Blodskut’s Forgotten Remains would likely have scored a high mark on my year end list, had I gotten to it in time. Regardless, this is a pretty monstrous debut and one that you should go find now.

Written for The Metal Observer.

Blodskut! - 75%

dismember_marcin, December 28th, 2017

A new pile of Schattenkult Produktionen releases just arrived to my headquarters and the first CD from the stack, which I started to listen to was Blodskut's debut album "Forgotten Remains". This band, formed by members of some lesser known German projects, truly impressed me and I have to say that I liked this album from the first listen. Even though there's nothing extraordinary or special about "Forgotten Remains", it still is a very solid and also worthy piece of black metal, which is always good to listen to.

I have to say that "Forgotten Remains" is one of those albums which you start to like immediately. From the first song, Blodskut attacks with a good dose of killer black metal riffs, where the aggressive and vicious side has been nicely combined with more harmonious and catchy parts. Blodskut successfully uses old school influences, but do not limit themselves to them only, so this is why the music can easily change into melodic and from fast to slower. And in "Fire Burning Hate" there's even a strong thrashing vibe, which makes this song sound a lot like Desaster from their most interesting times. And it's a very good song indeed, I almost wish there was more of that thrashing stuff here. But Blodskut's music is very diverse, as I mentioned, their songs can sometimes have quite Swedish style for example, so there's plenty of interesting stuff which caught my attention and which I liked a lot. Even the fact that some songs are around ten minutes long doesn't disturb. Just give a listen to such tracks as "Break Apart", what a great song it is!

The only bigger objection I would probably have is for the drum sound - or maybe rather drum machine? Because to me it's like machine with that synthetic sound, rather than a real drumming. It's especially audible in the fastest parts, in songs like "Distance". Not that it bothers me much, I am not even sure if I'm right about my guess of using drum machine... But the fact is that I like that aspect of "Forgotten Remains" least, I don't like so much how it sounds and would change it, if I could. Other than that, the production is surprisingly clean, yet vicious and powerful, I like the guitars' tone a lot, so maybe it's one more reason why Blodskut music is so easy to get into and almost pleasant to listen to. It's just great melodic, yet aggressive and slightly harsh black metal. Very good indeed!

Standout tracks: "Fire Burning Hate", "Break Apart"

Verdict: 75/100