Triumvir Foul – Onslaught To Seraphim Review

In case you didn’t know, the Seraphim are the highest order of angels in Christianity and they appear as prominent beings in Judaism as well. So overcome with love for God, they actually burn with it, but they won’t look directly at him opting to instead cover their eyes with one pair of their six wings. It’s pretty cool that they purify things with fire (Cannibal Corpse can get on board with that), but spending an eternity wishing you could polish God’s knob while being terrified to even look the boss man in the face seems like a pretty wasted existence to me.

Release date: July 29, 2022. Label: Vrasubatlat (tapes) and Invictus Productions (CDs).
July of 2022 has a real bone to pick with these Seraphim dorks and appears to really want them dead. Earlier in the month, Maul released Seraphic Punishment coming after these celestial beings with simple bludgeonings sure to make your head bang. Now, Triumvir Foul is bringing the second wave of assault to the heavens with tremolo-laden riffs, steady marching kicks and leads that throw lightning bolts back at the gods who dared chuck them at pissed-off heathens in the first place.

Onslaught To Seraphim opens with eerie synth sounds and rhythmic vocalization citing that Triumvir Foul’s particular portal to hell has widened signifying that their war with God is still ongoing. “Presage” continues its assault with quiet-to-loud rolling drums and guitars reminiscent of “Killchain” that hit hard once they reach full volume. You’ll get your first taste of the lead guitars that are of a much higher pitch than the regular tone and skitter across the songs like a spider making its web. Those lead-style notes will flit in and out of the songs without necessarily getting unleashed as a full-tilt lead adding an extra dose of hellish chaos to the mix.

When those leads and notes coalesce into a volley of stinging arrows, however, it can be really fun. “Flesh Diocese” is rife with divebombs and squealing notes that would give off a party vibe if this was an 80’s hair band but comes off as sinister madness in Triumvir Foul’s bleak world.

The bass tone in particular on this album is thick and hideous. It just as often pops out like quick jabs to the ear when songs are at full blasting speed as it does leading a trudging battering ram of slow riffage. You can listen to “Serpents’ Gnash For War” to hear those both balanced in a single track. That same muddiness to the bass is lathered over all the songs to make everything feel chaotic and messy. That messiness is intentional and is by no means an indication of the band lacking instrumental precision. This is a declaration of war against angels and gods, it should be messy and chaotic. Ad Infinitum’s vocals add to that madness as his dryer barks and shouts have a tinge of the unhinged. It comes across particularly well when he hits quick double notes like an “ACK, ACK” equivalent to Gollum coughing out his inner demons.

Since almost all of the riffs are of a tremolo persuasion, tempo is really where Triumvir Foul creates some variety. “Bašmu Enthralled, Horned Creations” offers the slowest moment where its opening begins at a crawl like you’re tentatively taking steps into a cave that you know is full of giant centipedes but you have no choice other than to proceed. Eventually, that centipede bite comes and the song goes running wild with panic about the cave. “Infected Virtue” goes the opposite route going for Gatling gun speed out of the gate and sticking to it.

The consistent style and approach to songwriting bolster the cohesion and sense that this album is telling a story. Onslaught To Seraphim is the closing chapter in a trilogy of albums and for the band as a whole. If you’ve been following their career up to now, this will be the perfect final nail in the crucifixion of your listening experience. If this is your first bout with the Portland duo, album number three is a great place to start when you need a soundtrack for throwing communion wine in a priest’s face.

Posted by Spencer Hotz

Admirer of the weird, the bizarre and the heavy, but so are you. Why else would you be here?

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