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Pandemonium - Promo 2010 - 70%

Phuling, May 25th, 2011

I gotta be honest and say I’m not sure I’ve ever heard Pandemonium before. I’ve been aware of the existence of a local Swedish band bearing the same name, but I can’t recall myself to have heard of the Polish one. Looking them up it surprises me I haven’t, considering the fact that they’ve been around for 20 years now and have released a couple of albums on Mystic Production, a label I’ve been in contact with. But I guess some bands just go by unnoticed sometimes. But here we have their Promo 2010, meant as a precursor to the upcoming album Misanthropy.

The two songs on here are unofficial versions, although I’m not sure what makes them unofficial, but I guess it means they’ll be re-recorded for the album. The promo also contains a whole bunch of videos, all shot live but one of which has studio sound dubbed over it. And it’s by giving those songs a listen I can make the assumption that Pandemonium have changed a bit from its past, going for a more black metal influenced sound than before. Of course the live-shot videos don’t really have the best quality in audio nor video, but it’s most certainly good enough to get a feel for their live performances and an insight to their earlier material. It’s from two different festival performances in 2010, but the quality in filming doesn’t change all that much in between, just the placement of the camera. But nonetheless I feel we should focus on the two new songs on here, the two audio tracks.

The opener Black forest starts off so reminiscent, and it takes me a while before I start to realize it reminds me a bit of Sacramentum’s mixture of black and death metal. The tempo is relatively slow, the guitars almost dissonant and vocally it’s got a style and pattern that reminds me more of sludgy doom metal than anything else. It’s a slower, harsher grunt that gives the tune a very obscure feel. And when the music slows down even more and a scream emanates from the background the riffing suddenly reminds me of earlier Lord Belial. But with that being said it’s not like it sounds typically Swedish or nothing, I assume it’s more ‘cause of my own origin that I make those two comparisons. God delusion is a song that carries on in the same manner, meaning a tempo that stays away from blasting and concentrates more on atmosphere. There’s a really great guitar line recurring in the track, and it brings with it a chilling melody that goes very well with the otherwise quite chugging riffing. It almost feels like Hooded Menace got into the melting pot.

The production could be slightly better, but hopefully it’ll be much stronger on the upcoming album release. Musically it leaves nothing more to wish for, they’ve definitely got a strong sense of writing and the wickedly atmospheric sound nailed down. I’ll keep myself from raising the name to the sky until I’ve heard more material, but as it is now it’s definitely good. Oh, and by the way, releasing a promo as a digipack feels rather luxurious.

Originally written for My Last Chapter