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A Bloody, Demented Mess - 66%

Ba Zuulizx Karoth, February 5th, 2014

Hailing from the depths of the Portuguese black metal scene is Vetala offering the world it's first EP; a bloody, hateful monument of expression for their hatred of the world. Upon seeing the artwork and reading the note written to all listeners, one instantly knows what Vetala and their 'Black Circle' (including bands such as Irae and Mons Veneris) is about: misanthropic, satanic, poorly rehearsed black metal in the essence of the 'traditional' sound.

Vetala's sound can be described as a re-incarnation of the infamous Les L├ęgions Noires from France. Now, many bands have tried to re-create the horrible atmosphere the Legions prided their selves in and failed, for the most part. 'Death Plagues' not only matches but nearly exceeds the Black Legions for their disgusting, demented sound. However, it's not as raw as one may think (especially those who have witnessed the bands demos). In fact, at points the production is as clear as any other recording you have heard, including even the occasional clean, yet terrifying, guitar tones.

Though some of the material offered is typical, raw and hateful black metal, the band has many different elements to their music. These elements include not only blast beats, but also calm drum patterns. At times you will hear a grainy, horrible sound which is either a violin or cello, I honestly have no idea, but it sound sick as hell. The vocals range from the usual black metal rasps, to Burzumic shrieks, to clean vocals and show an impressive amount of diverse and terrible skills that Vetala have to offer.

Though much of the black metal today either stays completely traditional or the complete opposite, nearly desecrating the genre, 'Death Plagues' find an extremely unsubtle cross between both worlds. From ferocious beauty to horrid, decaying silence, Vetala's first EP is definitely worth trying to get a hold of. Though, chances are, you will be paying a significantly high price due to the record being completely out of circulation. I highly recommend this album to underground appreciators and devotees, yet I advise those who are not 'into' this type of music; do not buy this. You'll hate it due to its constantly uncomfortably sound. It was not meant for you. A complete masterpiece in my eyes... a bloody, demented mess.