Wretched Blessing – Wretched Blessing Review

A more fitting name for a metal band you will not find. Like, to the point where it actually seems rather shocking that the designation has never before been taken. Wretched Blessing?? Why, of course! And sure, it could just as easily equate to finally being blessed with a child, only to discover that child is Damien Thorn, an individual who at this very moment happens to be staring all of Hell’s daggers into your head for buying an off brand of fruit rollups. Not even that surpasses a truly “wretched blessing,” though, as illustrated through the terminal delight so many of us experience via excessive exposure to crabby hollering, rude riffing, and eternally quarrelsome drumming.

Logical conclusion: Heavy metal is the most wretched blessing we humans could ever hope to endure, and this particular Wretched Blessing endeavors to bless listeners with a variety of wretchedness that resists virtually all strict genre boundaries. Death metal? Yep, right over here! Black metal? Oh, it’s lurking in the corners, baby. Punky AND beat-downy hardcore? Come on in, you riled lil rascals! Pack it all into a tidy little bowl and you’ve got yourself a gnarly little windfall titled… Wretched Blessing! LIMITLESS BLESSINGS OF A MARKEDLY VILE NATURE! Well, as limitless as you can get inside a 15 minute venture.

Two people! That’s all it takes to raise a ruckus like this. We’ve got a notably bearded member from Yautja, Kayhan Vaziri, taking on guitar duties, and slaughtering every bit of the drums directly alongside is Rae Amitay, whomst you hopefully already know from Immortal Bird and Thrawsunblat (pronounced Thrawsunblat). Amitay and Vaziri also share vocal duties under the Wretched Blessing banner, and honestly, all the howling top to bottom here is fired from a pretty similar furnace, so don’t axe me who’s barking here or growling yon, as it all sounds like the roars of someone who’s jusssssst missed the last train back to Cozy Town after a brutal day of flaying souls at Hell’s Endless Acres.

Four songs make up the core of this EP, with “Spurious Ovation” and “Pseudoascension” landing first after a surprisingly breezy intro. The former leaps right down the listener’s throat with a furious hybrid of dissonant black metal and dismal death that’s punctuated with sudden cuts into beat-down hardcore, and the latter provides an even more deliberate punk thump that underscores a crucial and scrumptious D-beat strut that eventually gives way to a slower pounding that’s perfectly suited for punching through walls. So, yes, by all means play this EP when you want to say hello to the neighbors by suddenly launching your head through 10 inches of drywall.

Release date: April 26, 2024. Label: Self-released.
Then, why not preface the second half of the EP with a pitch-shifted snippet of Steve Buscemi from Spy Kids 2, amirite? Wait… what? Hey, it’s a public pool, people—everyone’s welcome, especially Steve Buscemi. “Anathemic” follows, and with it comes the most manifest nod to pure death to be found inside these succinct 15 minutes, clomping along like a sashaying golem until the pace inches up to throw bolts (wink wink) just before the high-risk 1:30 mark. And lastly, “Mirror Vulture” closes the EP out on a notably dark and ominous note, melding all the Wretched Blessing strengths into one tidy 3:45 closer that deftly underlines the duo’s affinity for blurring lines and pounding the listener right in the chiclets like it’s their job. The song kicks off slacked and menacing, slowly building momentum until a burly riff breakout around 2:20 finally launches the full complement of crusty blackened death right up to its very clamorous end.

What more could you ask for as a fan of heavy metal’s boundless wretched blessings? Well, more Wretched Blessing, for starters, which is hopefully where Wretched Blessing will eventually lead. Until then, pull up the ol’ bootstraps and prepare for 15 minutes of right hooks and mean left jabs right to the chin.


Photo by Lacy Simmons

Posted by Captain

Last Rites Co-Owner; Senior Editor; That was my skull!

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