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Feigned primitiveness - 83%

Felix 1666, September 6th, 2019
Written based on this version: 2008, CD, Season of Mist Underground Activists

Pest from Sweden deserve my eternal respect, because their blacker than black monument "Lifit es dauðafærð" was, is and will forever be unique. Nonetheless, we have to keep in mind another release as well, their lukewarm last album. The here presented work from 2008 does not reach the brilliance of the 20-minutes-piece and honestly spoken, nobody did expect this. But - and here comes good news - it also has nothing in common with this mainstream-metal influenced wannabe black metal that "The Crowning Horror" delivered in abundance.

The ruffians dish up compositions which sound harsh, black, insane, spontaneous and sometimes pretty bulky. In combination with the somewhat muddy production, the songs create an almost chaotic impression. The delicately titled track on position 6(66), to give but one example, starts with a pretty generic riff. It already hits the mark, but Pest intensify the aura of the song very quickly by generating dense and untameable sections. The song almost overturns. Miraculously, nobody gets injured - if we do not count some poor Christians who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Well, let them count their blessings, we have to go on.

The duo, that much is certain, does not lack nastiness or strength. Its songs have this rabid essence that separates true black metal from calculated music which wants to be - but never will be - part of the black movement, due to whatever reason. Pest's authenticity becomes blatantly obvious and sometimes they have this anarchic and simultaneously archaic touch that a trio in its infancy, Venom was its name, once brought to life. But Pest do not sound amateurish, their bestiality is based on solid technical and compositional skills. Okay, I agree that it remains discussable whether it was necessary to pen another epic number. The closer clocks in at 14,5 minutes. It draws its power from a loud / soft dynamic and it does not fall by the wayside. Nevertheless, a more compact format would have been helpful, because this track is not able to generate the unfathomable depth of its big brother. But the project to write a worthy successor of "Lifit es dauðafærð" was doomed to failure right from the beginning.

Over-ambitions aside, the less opulent songs score without exception and are almost immune against melodies. "Nights in the Cursed Chapel" offers short melodic parts at the end and yes, there are more pieces that hold trace elements of harmonies. However, the normal case is that Pest manage a hellish storm. Take the title track or "Blessed by Hellfire", these songs show how it sounds when Nifelheim and Aura Noir unite. Pest combine the best of both worlds and they benefit from the fact that these worlds already lie in close proximity to each other. So many exciting sequences show up that it is almost impossible to stay on top of things. But isn't it better to be part of this whirlwind instead of having just the observer status? All non-epic tracks, and this is an almost magical detail, have a very primitive appearance, but they are definitely not overly simply constructed. However, their pure rawness is impressive and it goes without saying that the roughshod voice emphasizes the coarseness of the material. So there can be no doubt that the album is able to deliver the soundtrack for your next home slaughtering. Just buy some poor animal or kidnap a fan of ... please insert the band you hate most... and let the celebration begin.

Rest In Morbid Darkness - 95%

nuncunt, November 23rd, 2014

Pest have been around a while, but are little known. I came across their album "Rest in morbid darkness" some time ago, through circumstance I cannot honestly remember. The sound of the album belies the date at which it was released, and you could happily conclude that it was part of the 90's Black Metal scene. But no, the truth? This album was released in 2008, on Seasons underground activists records. (A branch of Seasons of mist records)

For starters, this is not an album for the easily offended. In traditional black metal style, the album is bedecked with titles such as "Vomit up the blood of Jesus" among others. Listening to the album, one of the immediate striking features is that, unlike so many Black-metal bands, Pest's songs are actually very catchy, if that's the appropriate word. The opening belter "Possesed by the Beast" is a prime example of this. After raging through similar 3-5 minute black metal standards, we reach the final track; "The Lust for Cruelty" which is a 14-minute black metal epic, which can evoke feelings of rage, dread, and awe, as good black metal should.

Rest in Morbid Darkness definitely sticks to the roots of Swedish black metal laid out by the legendary band Bathory. A heavy bass tone is very prominent in the mix throughout the entire album, which gives a driving grimness to the sound. The track "Possessed by the Beast," starts out slow which give the illusion that the song will be a slow and epic intro, then blasts into menacing blast beat driven black metal. A amazing and captivating beginning. The track "The Lust for Cruelty" takes that initial illusion in the opening song and creates a desolate atmosphere. The ending of "The Lust for Cruelty" is very odd. It ends with a crescendo of noise that fades in and out. I won't ruin how it ends by describing it in detail, but it completely creates the intended desolation with a hint of paranoia. This is definitely an album to listen to if old sounding evil black metal is what you enjoy.


This is the evil return! - 100%

csehszlovakze, September 12th, 2012

This is the latest album of the Swedish black metal outfit named Pest. This release is radically different from the rest of their discography and is the most evil of it.

If you heard the "Evil Return" EP, you already know the direction the band has taken: true black metal with a little hint of thrash. The EP serves as a preview and while it's really enjoyable it's nothing compared to this full-length.

The sound became heavy with the bass being quite high in the mix. The mix itself is powerful and brings an evil atmosphere that follows you through the whole album. Every instrument is played with skill. The drums are pounding blastbeats for most of the time but not exclusively, remaining interesting. Vocals are agressive and powerful, the guitars are heavily distorted but never thin.

If you only knew the band's previous releases you'll be surprised by the amount of originality in the songwriting. Every instrument empowers the other, dragging you into the darkest pits of hell like never before. The guitar riffs are memorable and you will be surprised by the amount of solos here since they aren't often utilized in black metal. The album has both slow and fast solos, sometimes combined, at other times being midtempo leads.

Standout tracks? It's really hard to choose because the whole album is strong and consistent. The start of the album already shows its potential which it fully satisfies. "Nights in the Cursed Chapel" has the highest amount of lead sections while "Blessed by Hellfire" is memorable because of its chorus. "Vomit Up the Blood of Jesus" has a strong antichristian vibe to it and not only because of the title. "Shadows of the Dead" brings the occult to the table. "The Final Strike of Doom" has the most dynamic section, perfectly illustrating the quote "even the heavens shall burn when we are gathered" (of Bathory fame). The last song is slow, spreads bone-chilling mood of death and funeral while keeping the evil tone you're already familiar with.

Should you listen to this album? Definitely. If you don't like Darkthrone-esque black metal or DSBM exclusively, you will love this. This is the best effort of the band by far, I dare to say the best black metal album of 2008 and the most evil metal album I've ever heard.

(originally written for

Menacing misanthropy, diabolical pleasures - 80%

autothrall, October 29th, 2009

Sweden's most primal and evil black metal band returns for its third album of menacing misanthropy, and with the exception of some of their earlier EPs, it's their best material to date.

Rest in Morbid Darkness is very true to its blackened thrashing roots, you will hear a lot of Celtic Frost and Bathory used to the ultimate advantage. "Possessed by the Beast" is a rager, I particularly enjoy the post-chorus where the melodic speed metal leads break out. "Nights in the Cursed Chapel" is a creepier track which really evokes a nostalgic feeling few bands are capable of (Mortuary Drape, Sabbat and Negative Plane are a few who come to mind). "Blessed by Hellfire" is moored in excellent distorted bass, driving beats and simple yet effective melodies. True proto black metal indeed. "Bestial Crucifixion" is my favorite here, a melodic and kickass anthem to Satan. "Vomit Up the Blood of Jesus" and "Shadows of the Dead" also rock.

The real beauty of this album is it belongs in another time and place. Sure it's 2008, but the tone and songwriting places it back in 1990, when black metal was just taking shape from its influences like Celtic Frost, Mercyful Fate, Bathory, Kreator, etc. There is no bullshit here. No fairy metal vocals, no symphonic elements, no trends. Even the production reflects this, it just sounds old. A truly cult record from a band who has always kept it real, and a diabolic pleasure to listen to.