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Anima Hereticae – Ov Behest

Anima Hereticae
Ov Behest
by Ben Gardiner at 24 January 2022, 9:14 PM

Finnish Blackened Death Metal, ANIMA HERETICAE taps into the primal savagery of nature, specifically into the unforgiving harsh chill of Finland and they channel this through their ghastly, deathly heavy music to create an EP of dark, swirling aggression. Dripping with atmosphere, the deep tones cocoon you in a world of harsh vocals, blistering guitars and blasting drums, engulfing riffs and bracing composition makes this a captivation ep from the first tremolo riff to the last cymbal crash.

The EP opens with a fuzzy haze of drawling guitar melody, and it feels very Stoner Doom with the slow groovy drum beat that joins the guitars. The snare sound is fantastic, very warm and raw, cutting through the sound like a sharp knife, making every hit count. The vocals really draw the music into Blackened territory here, with their diabolical coarseness and expansive effect, feeling like a chorus of devilish voices chanting in perfect unison. As the song runs its course, we get to enjoy some great blast beats, where the snare sound really shines, and nice rumbling double time bass pedal work.

Ov Behest” steps up the heaviness, the vocals becoming a deep growl. The combination of the Death Metal drums, string instruments and guitar work is reminiscent of SEPTICFLESH. The addition of the uplifting string work adds a layer of epic grandiose on the first track, transforming what would be a strait-laced blackened Death song into an inspired experience.

The final track, the 11 minute long “Constellation of Capricorn” opens with a patient, hair raising tom build, slowly ramping up the excitement for what will be the finale of the release. After a beat of delicate strum guitars, we get a melancholy, Doomy section of slow fuzzy guitar, and a lethargic drumbeat, which will leave you entirely unprepared for the hailstorm of Black Metal that comes in next. Coarse, scratchy vocals, a viciously quick blast and muddied tremolo guitars roll into the track like an impenetrable sandstorm. This energy is maintained for a good portion of the song, breaking so that the Tom build of the intro can make a return, accompanied by a pensive guitar melody. Again, the strings work wonderfully to lift the track up into soaring heights, with the already great sounding sections of sweeping guitar riffs and chugging double bass, the addition of the orchestral layer adds so much. The half time Blasts we hear in the final minute do a great job of showing off how great the snare sound is in its most eligible but utilised form. The track ends with one final bar of simplistic drums as the guitar and strings begin to fade away and this is the perfect moment to listen to it all over again.

This EP is short, sweet, straight to the point and a wonderful showcase of what I hope we can come to expect of ANIMA HERETICAE. The production is perfect, it’s a great example of seamlessly mixing Black and Death, bringing the best elements from both. Ferocious and scrappy, a highly enjoyable listen.

Songwriting:  8
Musicianship:  8
Memorability:  7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Stone That Burns
2. Ov Behest
3. Constellation of Capricorn
Lineup:
Teppo Ristola - Drums
Taneli Jämsä - Guitars, Vocals (backing)
Ville Rutanen - Vocals, Bass
Record Label: Independent
     


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