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Traditional black metal without any compromises - 70%

kluseba, March 8th, 2018

Ossuaire is a new French-Canadian black metal band formed back in 2016 that quickly came around with a first release in form of La diatribe infernale. The band has recently been playing concerts in Quebec and Ontario and is slowly emerging from the underground. Even though the identities of several members are hidden under obscure nicknames, it seems that they have been in other bands of the metal noir québécois movement. This experience shows throughout this quite consistent workmanlike first effort. The concept behind the seven songs is also interesting as it describes the prophetic events that occurred during the six days preceding the annihilation of the world in six fitting tracks. Musically, the band describes its approach as a mixture of violent Canadian back metal and a more melodic Finnish style.

To be honest, I can't find anything truly melodic about this release but that isn't a bad thing. La diatribe infernale is a charismatically underproduced angry, fast and hypnotizing effort introduced with nerve-firing distorted guitar sounds and concluded with mysterious astral sounds. Everything in between has a relentless punk vibe with simplistic riffs and mostly unspectacular bass sounds. The drum play is a little bit more versatile and features blistering passages, chaotic up-tempo variations and a few more experimental mid-paced parts. The vocals are quite raw and throaty recalling Norwegian black metal of the early and mid-nineties. The instrumental work harmonizes well with the mid-ranged vocals, proving that there is actually some skilled structure behind the grim chaos. The record doesn't overstay its welcome with six tracks and a running time just below thirty-five minutes which is perfect for this type of music. To keep things traditional, the release is available as tape in limited quantities but elitist collectors can also grab a CD and contemporary posers might even purchase the record digitally.

Fans of fast-paced, gritty and traditional black metal with poetically intellectual French lyrics about the annihilation of the world can grab this record without any doubts. Ossuaire offers hypnotizing old school black metal without any unnecessary additions that doesn't deny its French-Canadian roots but also honors its Scandinavian inspirations. Obviously, the band's unholy energy is best enjoyed on stage, so let's hope Ossuaire continues to increase its live presence. To conclude, La diatribe infernale doesn't reinvent the genre and isn't the most memorable black metal album but it certainly is good for what it is. It especially convinces in its few atmospheric and slower parts that interrupt the traditional black metal madness. The impressive drum play and concise vocals are above average while guitar and bass play could still improve and vary a little bit more. All six tracks are convincing without unnecessary lengths and make for a quite consistent release. If you like black metal and happen to stumble over a rare copy of this release, you can't go wrong with this.