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Cold, Focused, and West of Finland - 77%

Zodijackyl, June 22nd, 2016

Spectral Wound are a newborn black metal band from Montreal who have fashioned an admirable effort in their Terra Nullius tape. There is an overt influence from Sargeist on the guitar work, with an echo of Baptism and Behexen as well as their Quebecoic comrades in the Sepulchral Productions stable. The most prominent aspect is the overwhelming Sargeist emulation - they wear it on their sleeve. The suffocating intensity with relatively clear production - little distortion in the recording itself - is a mark of the style. Spectral Wound bring this into their own element during the slower passages of longer songs, maintaining the same atmosphere but drawing it out and luring the listener around with ominous riffs.

The moods vary between the dissonant, tense riffs of the first two tracks to the crawling, ominous melodies woven into the next two, and brought together on the last two. It begins with that intense, dark ceremonial vibe, but breaks into something a bit more unique to this band. There is an odd Finnish-Quebecois duality and understanding here. Both cold northern nations who thrive on their own identity. There is certainly a kinship of raw emotions in black metal between both. Perhaps the more unique elements on SW - like the frontman's energetic style - don't come through as much on tape as they do live, but it still ends up being a very coherent recording.

This is a great tape, give it a listen when your mind is clear and let it take over.