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Various Artists - Fangs Vol 2 Award winner

Various Artists
Fangs Vol 2
by Rachel Montgomery at 03 November 2020, 3:24 PM

You’ve heard of European metal, you’ve heard of American metal, Brazilian metal, and J-Metal. But have you heard of African metal? Mongol Records proudly presents Fangs, their second compilation of various African metal artists. Concentrating on the South African scene, Fangs Vol 2 features artists like PAPANG, MONSTROID, and III SYSTEM. From Bandcamp, Fangs delves into an “oft-overlooked” metal scene that’s worth checking out. From our listen, we’d say this is especially true for fans of traditional, nu-metal, progressive, and grungier sounds.

The first minute-long song by FACING THE GALLOWS sounds like something they’d play in Hot Topic back when the mall store was dark and smelled like tires. On another listen, the blending of melodic and death-metal notes is intriguing. The second track by PAPANG has the same octane sound, bringing in loud snare and tuned-down guitars. The vocals are reminiscent of pop-punk, but overall, the sound is smooth and rocks hard. The long instrumental break has notes of traditional & doom metal, sludging together in a low, bluesy rumble. The narration before the screaming outburst in the refrain has a way of piquing your interest. People who are more into traditional metal will definitely dig the second track.

For fans of melodic, tech-heavy bands with an emotive edge like ASKING ALEXANDRIA or rap-metal, DIVIDING THE ELEMENTS features some interesting rap-metal and melodic metal combos you should check out. III SYSTEM’s track brings some reggae elements reminiscent of SUBLIME on their track “Ego Check”. More traditional, blues-inspired metal continues with MONSTROID’s “Shadow Beast”. The gritty vocals and ballad-style lyrics captured our attention right away. The electronic sounds are also reminiscent of the late 70s/early 80s prog rock and metal era. It’s a long song, but worth the listen. Likewise, ETHYL ETHER brings some psychedelic overtures to their song, coupled with some creaming choruses and wa-wa guitars. The subtle melodies hidden in their track, “Ode”.

There’s a good variety on the album. LELAHELL has a more underground-sounding metal song called “Adam The First” which uses thrashing guitars and low guttural vocals to deliver a heavier sound to the album. DEMOGOROTH SATANUM brings a more black-metal inspired sound, with militant rhythms and tight, melodic guitars. VULVODYNIA comes in with the heaviest track on the album. The vocals are an onslaught of gutturals and screeches that duel with the continuously sweeping guitars. The final track on the album, SCARAB’s “Coffin Texts” have a unique, echoing guttural vocal style and tight musicianship that makes them intriguing.

If nu-metal inspired underground metal is your jam, most of these tracks are worth the listen. For our money, we’d say pay attention to PAPANG, MONSTROID, and ETHYL ETHER, the latter if you’re into more traditional metal. The former two are newer bands, but they bring a bluesy sound to their songs that oozes progressiveness and keeps listeners on their toes. For fans of heavier stuff, VULVODYNIA, SCARAB, and DEMOGOROTH SATANUM are good to check out.

Songwriting: 8
Production: 10
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Facing The Gallows - Small Hands
2. Papang - My Engine Burns
3. Dividing The Element - Pakaipa
4. Ill System - Ego Check
5. Monstroid - Shadow Beast
6. State Dependency - Bridges
7. Albinobeach - Jugga
8. Vielikan - God (s), Love and Life
9. Lelahell - Adam The First
10. Demogoroth Satanum - The Apostate
11. Ethyl Ether - Ode
12. Vulvodynia - Anthropophagus
13. Kishi - Kianda
14. Scarab - Coffin Texts
Record Label: Mongrel Records


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