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Suffering – Temen-Ni-Gru (11:11)

Suffering
Temen-Ni-Gru (11:11)
by Gary Hernandez at 01 October 2022, 6:32 PM

“Suffering” is that annoying thing other people whine about and say they have too much of. SUFFERING is also the chosen moniker of 11 extreme metal bands, two of which are from England. One of those two from the UK released a new EP on June 17, 2022 via Matriarch Records called “Temen-Ni-Gru (11:11).” And if you are wondering about the significance of “11,” the album clocks out at 21:16, so not even a remote permutation of 11. Their debut album was titled “11,” so there is that. We’ll see if they drop a third release called “11:11:11.” Only time will tell with that one. As for the 11 metal bands—nah, sometimes a banana is just a banana.

Since we are doing etymology, sort of, I should share that “temen-ni-gru” features in the video game “Devil May Cry 3.” In that context it is “an unholy tower that harbors the 'true' gateway to the Demon World” and takes its inspiration, at least in design and artistic rendering, from Bruegel’s (c. 1563) paintings of the Tower of Babel. It may also refer to the pre-Sumerian “Great Ziggurat of Ur.” Or maybe it’s just the type of oblique reference that extreme metal bands like to use to compel their fans to wander dusty sections of old libraries mumbling Eldritch incantations in Latin backwards or at least something to make Alexa and Siri rethink their career choices.

SUFFERING is listed as a Black/Doom Metal band and that kind of works. There are some slower tempo-bits, especially the final track, “Blood.” There is also a general overtone of dark ritualistic evil which some might call Doom with its folk horror roots. As far as Black, well, yeah, plenty of Black Metal elements across all four tracks—most notably distorted tremolo riffs. Production-wise, there is a hint of hellscape, but that is more about tone and tenor than lo-fi values.

The EP has something of a slow start with “The Faceless Disciples of the Watch” having a hesitant entry and frankly giving off demo vibes until about the 3:30 mark when the band seems to say, “Okay, enough of this. Let’s get on with the serious shit.” And indeed they do, salvaging the track and giving it some definitive form and power. Next up is the title track. It comes on strong and goes far in redeeming the weaker moments of track 1. By the time the distinctive riffs of the third track, “Cloven Hoof,” take purchase, SUFFERING has proven themselves. This is probably the best track of the album, though “Blood” is also a solid offering.

Altogether, “Temen-Ni-Gru (11:11)” is good find. I think they still might be finding their footing, but there’s plenty of potential. A worthy 6.66, this one.  Available via BandCamp or straight through the Matriarch site.

Songwriting: 6
Musicianship: 6
Memorability: 5
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1.  The Faceless Disciples of the Watch
2.  Temen-Ni-Gru
3.  Cloven Hoof
4.  Blood
Lineup:
Malleus – Drums
Sturmgeist Fornicator Insultus – Vocals
Aýdlig – Guitars
Inquinatus – Bass
Record Label: Matriarch Records
     


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