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Dream Me, Deceive Me, You Perfidious Witch - 83%

bayern, April 5th, 2019

Ipek “the wytch” and Co. have been riding an up-and-down roller-coaster ever since their inception, starting as prime old school thrash providers (the debut) before falling under Dany Filth and his Cradle of Filth’s charm (the sophomore), until they decided that “anything goes” and poured all possible influences to produce one of the first genuine extreme progressive metal combos on their admirable third offering “Nefret”. However, they felt that they hadn’t said their final word within the purer black/gothic metal template, and “Memories of a Dying Whore” was another nod towards the mentioned famed Brits, a not very exceptional, emulative recording that didn’t raise the hopes for the album reviewed here very high…

still, I was one of those who knew that this opus would be a high rather than a low as the band were alternating one diverse, and consequently better, effort with one less varied, more scholastically-executed one, and the time has come for one of the former type. And you bet it has with “Birthing the Beast” crushing through the speakers, a notable progressive death/thrasher which is very close to qualifying for any of the first three Darkane outings, Ipek’s vocal bravado in full swing with all the aspects of it displayed throughout, from the inhuman witch-like shrieks to the semi-shouty deathy growls, to the clean pathos-like tirades. A fairly wide ground has been covered on this saga, both music and singing-wise, the band pouring all the tools they have up their sleeves very early thus dealing with the element of surprise to a fair extent.

Regardless, there will be few disgruntled fans once the restless death/black symphony “Serpents Among Us” and the unbridled death/thrashing fury that is the title-track have passed, the hyper-active delivery putting a wide smile on everyone’s face as the guys (and a girl) mosh onward with little restraint, sometimes letting the good old thrash (“Despised Existence”, “Prayers of The Decapitated”) lead the show, sometimes winking at the tech-death fraternity (“When The Sleepers Rise”) with more contrived, also more melodic pyrotechnics. A big surprise would be the emergence of “Fade to Black”… yes, a Metallica cover, a fairly individualistic rendition that has to be heard to be fully savoured. Ipek’s hellish hysterical vocal side doesn’t spare it as she pours all her apocalyptic emotions on it, the others trying hard to stay faithful to the calm tone of the original… except for those moments when a totally unheralded hyper-blasting passage tears the idyll this eye-opening gimmick applied several times throughout, making one either love the band for their twisted creativity or hate them for life for raping one of the finest ballads in music history with these brutal spasmodic insertions.

Yeah, the element of surprise doesn’t disappear completely, I tricked you here; the band’s desire to bring back their thrashy roots is apparently big including with a cover of one of their idols… only that there’s very little thrash on this particular cut as the delivery swings from the serene to the very aggressive and vice versa, a topsy-turvy listening experience that is again definitely worth hearing. It’s good that the band don’t apply this fluctuating approach elsewhere as the rest of the album firmly stays the intense headbanging course, including with a couple of short over-the-top blast-beating sections where their black metal-ish proclivities come to play, also ensuring there are more influences embedded here than the mere death/thrash hybridization.

Although the debut will always remain my favourite work from the band’s discography, I by all means consider the album here as well as “Nefret” positive occurrences, varied works of art that successfully mix several musical undercurrents without overdoing it. I haven’t fallen madly in love with them, and chances are slim that this will ever happen in the future, but I surely spin them now and then, especially during those nights when I roll in my bed having problems falling asleep, knowing only too well that a scary banshee shriek or a wicked witch’s croak will easily send me to the realm of dreams.