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Noroth – It Dwells Amongst Us

It Dwells Amongst Us
by Liam Easley at 07 May 2020, 11:48 PM

There’s a curious scene in Death Metal right now that seems fresh but really isn’t. Maybe the reemergence of the colorful long-sleeves, gruesome artwork and the market for cassette tapes somehow make it seem new. After all, the cassettes are packaged more professionally and less independently than back in the day, the long-sleeves are more vibrant and the production of the music is less raw but nevertheless brutal.

This new scene I speak of is that of the “caveman riff” that every Maggot Stomp band claims to have and only a few actually succeed in. NOROTH, while not signed to Maggot Stomp, have nevertheless found themselves playing the “caveman riff.”

Usually, this so-called troglodyte riff is rooted in Doom/Death Metal, and Noroth was one example of that. The doomy breakdowns of “Extinction, Prisoner ov Splendor” and “Shadow, My Patriarch” reeked of filth, and they carried some of the heaviest riffs in this new scene.

Like most bands of this style, the music was not particularly original. However, there was a way to make this sound work, and there was a way to make it boring. Noroth made it work on each track. In fact, the riffs could even be memorable at times. When not playing with memorability, the music went for the jugular: heavy breakdowns and mosh-inducing, churning riffs.

Outside of songwriting, the record also expressed excellent structure. While it started out strong, it also ended strong and remained neutral throughout the record. The final breakdown of “Vengeful Tribulation” was crushingly heavy, and it concluded the record with complete closure. Even the short overall runtime strengthened the structure, as it gave it more listenability while even maintaining a slight modesty.

In the end, “It Dwells Amongst Us” was a very good addition to the new wave of Death Metal that came at the turn of the decade. It was heavy and slow, everything a fan of the genre needed. If you want caveman riffs, have at this record.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Shadow, My Patriarch
2. Ironclad, Primitive Intent
3. Cerberus
4. Mount ov Misery
5. Extinction, Prisoner ov Splendor
6. Blistering Eyes
7. It Dwells Amongst Us
8. Vengeful Tribulation
Biaggo – Bass & Vocals
Mike – Guitars
Itzhak – Drums
Record Label: Caligari Records


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