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Horribook Shitan - 10%

Under_The_Oak, May 12th, 2012

This is, without a doubt, one of the worst "releases" I have ever had the displeasure of hearing. I'm being generous even giving it a 10/100, and I do so only because there are sparse moments of actual music. The overwhelming majority of Hornbook Seytan is filled with a never-ending rumbling noise, with intermittent ambient sounds, and rarely, but surely, some instruments and vocals.

Now, I have no problem with ambient music or gritty black metal. I like Dethrone the Son of God quite a lot, and the haunting ambience in bands like Darkspace is excellent. However, this EP appears to be a haphazard and messy mish-mash of some of Havohej's other recordings. For some odd reason, after a bit of rumbling noise, "Hornbook" starts off with the cover of Venom's song "Leave Me in Hell" from the Man and Jinn EP, then goes into additional music. "Seytan" is a completely ambient track.

In other words, Hornbook Seytan is an utter waste, save for what little minimalistic black metal is buried beneath the layers of annoying rumbling shit. It feels almost like Paul Ledney put this out as part of a bet to see what horrendously thoughtless recycled garbage Hells Headbangers would release and his fans would buy. I can appreciate anti-musical music, but this has no meaningful aesthetic to it; it's simply a steaming pile of failure.