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MONS VENERIS: "Vastlands of My Decayed Realm" - 80%

skaven, October 26th, 2012

Although Portuguese raw black metal scene has appealed to me a long time already, for some unknown reason it wasn’t until recently that I exposured myself to Mons Veneris, one of the most important acts in the country’s underground, and also part of the Black Circle Propaganda along with Vetala and Irae. Vastlands of My Decayed Realm is thus the first piece of Mons Veneris I’ve heard, and most certainly I am not let down. In fact, this tape seems to surpass many other releases from this circle of bands.

The key to Vastlands of My Decayed Realm’s success is that it knows how to craft utterly noisy and sick lo-fi black metal but with sufficient amount of musicianship. I don’t mean that you have to be a master of your instrument when you play this kind of filthiness, but compared to acts like Astaroth or Decrepitude, Mons Veneris actually keeps these songs nicely together, evident right after the introductory ”The Cremation of Light” (a true feast on screeching and random guitar noise) on ”Vastlands of My Decayed Realm” that has a really grabbing guitar riff into it along with steady drum beats. ”Darkmoon of the Vampire” returns to the maniacal kind-of-noise of the intro, meaning a low-end guitar (bass?) pattern being repeated in front of some inhuman voices.

”Cursed and Tormented for All Eternity”, then again, gets back to the black metal, but fuck how insane this piece goes as well towards its end. The drum beats remain there, but both guitars on left and right channels turn into an utter mess of high-pitched notes on the fretboard. After this, ”Return to Chaos and Void” seems almost calmful with its howling, mysterious and less distorted guitars, but in reality we’re dealing with another well crafted piece of filth, concluding the demo tape that definitely leaves a positive aftertaste. I would go as far as saying that Vastlands of My Decayed Realm belongs to my favourite Portuguese releases at the moment, and I’ll make sure to keep track of this band’s output from now on.

4 / 5
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