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Deadly Doom - 97%

Erin_Fox, October 28th, 2006

The dark occult chants which emanate from the five tracks on Runemagick's "Envenom" pummel the listener with blunt force. This group plays with a doomy style instrumentally, with thick, lumbering grooves overlaid by growls of demonic possession and wicked black chants.

The monsterous tones of "Vultures" resonate with the enormous, deeply sustained bass notes from Emma Karlsson that give this trio a distinctly evil sound. Runemagick author fairly long compositions as so many doomy acts do, but they take pains to place enough variety in their riffing to hold the listener's attention well. The title track kicks off with a fast riff that is uncharacteristic for doom, but fits the dark atmosphere very well. The vocals are sparse much of the time with a specific emphasis on riffing.

Nicklas Rudolfsson handles the guitar and vocal duties for the group, placing melodic, single-note melodies over Karlsson's bass work when applicable, and at other times opting for a hammering chugging attack. Daniel Moilanen plays simple beats with a lot of start atop action and this technique suits the music of Runemagick very well. He places appropriate fills without overplaying and this is a key ingredient in the group's overall sound. As the stream of consciousness guitar melodies of the title track melt into stop action downpicking and triplet gallops, Moilanen provides the proper amount of accents needed in order to accentuate the heavy features inherent in the band's sound.

The flanged axe work Rudolfsson undertakes in "Nebulous" adds a cosmic aura to this group's compositional structure. The frontman's bleak vocal grumblings are sparse yet effective as the rumbling lyrics echo over the song's buzzing riffs. You'll find detuned, heavily distorted plodding throughout "Maelstrom", a track which seethes with the bitter force of dark magick.

This crawling repast of blackened doom ultimately succeeds in it's ominous pummeling as Runemagick reveals themselves to be yet another dusk triumvirate in the ever growing legions of the genre.