Cosmic Void Ritual / Draghkar / Ensepulcher – Three-Tape Attack Review

FAST RITES: because sometimes brevity is fundamental.

Fast Rites is a fun feature because it allows us to cover things like this: a three-tape attack from Blood Harvest. Each tape (and in one case an LP handled by Iron Bonehead) features a fresh new death metal band’s demo being granted a larger audience thanks a second pressing. Much of this material, with one exception, was released earlier in 2017 via underground labels like Translyvanian Tapes doing all the heavy lifting to discover crisp, raw new acts. So, a huge shout-out to them for ceaselessly scouring the underground to unearth gems like these and allow them enough exposure to take a step forward in their career with a label like Blood Harvest.

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In classic kvlt fashion, Cosmic Void Ritual is the solo project of a yet-to-be-identified individual. We assume that said individual is a standard mortal but that information is yet to be confirmed. (The band did not respond when reached for comment). Combining bludgeoning straight-forward, old school death metal with a penchant for vocals bereft of either melody or rhythm, the result is a sort of amped up Catacomb. Combined on this brief four-track EP are the project’s prior two-track demos (one of which was only available digitally via Bandcamp). Fans of cavernous production, relentless beats and chromatic riffage will be lining up to bang their heads to this one.

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This murktastic release of Draghkar was previously available only digitally. The three tracks represent the duo’s first demo release and will no be issued on cassette. The tracks contain multiple surges of riffless chaos supported by near blast beats punctuated by ebbs and flows of rhythmic brutality. Each murky passage emphasized by the crash of a tightly wound, potentially cracked cymbal. Early Triumvir Foul or Muknal are brought to mind. The production is muffled, serving to heighten the DIY feel of this homocidal release.

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An absolute ripper, this duo (also based out of California) seize onto the crossover thrash scene in the bay area utilizing some absolutely shredding solos and plenty of pacing that leans more towards punk than death. Both members come from Fresno-based death metal outlet Fiend and draw more than a touch of brutal grind from those experiences. This demo is high-energy, fast-paced death metal with guitars that assault like a metal karate chop hacking through a poodle’s spine. Short track-length makes for an experience that passes by in a blink — one that must be savored again and again. This is a true gem of the death metal underground in 2017. A bonafide face-puncher.

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Posted by Manny-O-War

Infinitely committed to the expansion of artistic horizons. Interested in hearing your grandparent's anecdotes and recipes. @mannyowar

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