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Temple Nightside - The Hecatomb

Temple Nightside
The Hecatomb
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 08 March 2017, 10:11 AM

TEMPLE NIGHTSIDE is a Black/Death Metal band hailing from Australia. Formed in 2010, they originally self-described as “Ritualistic Death Metal Necromancy. “The Hecatomb” was release under Iron Bonehead Productions but it appears the band is Independent at the moment. This is their second full-length album, and contains nine tracks. “Graven” is the seven-minute opener. The production is suitably muted as is often the case with more underground Black Metal. The vocals take the form of deep moans, with no discernable words, and envelop you from all angels with deep reverberation. Evil, malcontent and all things dark are at the forefront here. “Adrift in Sepulchral Entropy” is a bit faster but the gloomy elements remain as strong. Traditional song structure is cast aside pretty noticeably here. What you get instead is a slow grinding riff and some super-fast bass drum blasts, with the whispered lyrical moans. Sometimes a lead guitar break jumps in, without any regard for musical chord progressions.

Let’s talk about the three-part “Commune 3.1,” which is made up of three very short tracks, entitled “Ossuary,” “The Murderous Victor,” and “Burial Adoration,” combining for only four total minutes of sound. The 20 second “Ossuary” is nothing but a low ambient hum, of a foreboding death too horrendous to even visualize. “The Murderous Victor” has ominous tympani strikes amidst a backdrop of haunting spirits sending you nefarious subliminal messages in the utter desolation of the lowest plane of Hell itself. “Burial Adoration” completes the trifecta with a one-minute murmur of all the malicious and blasphemous things about human nature that we lock deep inside. When you consider this trilogy in the traditional sense of what music is, it’s hard to understand. I would instead urge you to think of it as art, as all music really is, outside any boundaries that your mind may have already put up.

“Fortress Of Burden and Distress” is a lumbering affair of what to me sounds like ritualistic murder, in catacombs of tombs buried deep beneath a blackened and burned out church, or the deep recesses of your consciousness. The chanting is key to this sound. “Within The Arms Of Nothingness” is an aptly titled track, because as you listen, it seems to slowly suck out your soul until the void of a black hole remains. There is so little sonority that it barely registers. However, herein lies the strength of the message that the song imparts. “Charnel Winds” is a nine-minute, culminating final track on the album. It drags on mercilessly, as I imagine time in Hell would, one meaningless day following another, with no reason for your existence or even a glimmer of hope that anything could change.

Overall I see this as Black Metal much more than Death Metal, but it is a unique twist. Instead of the high-pitched vocal shrieks and dual tone guitar drone of traditional Black Metal, the focus here is on ambient evil in every sense of that phrase. Sometimes you can indeed say a lot with a little. This would not be the kind of album you would want to play alone in the dark at night, but if you do, I would caution you to have salt and an exorcism spell handy for the demons that it would summon forth.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 8
Memoorability: 7
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Graven
2. Adrift in Sepulchral Entropy
3. Ossuary (Commune 3.1)
4. Fortress Of Burden and Distress
5. The Murderous Victor (Commune 3.2)
6. Within The Arms Of Nothingness
6. Tempest
7. Burial Adoration (Commune 3.3)
8. Charnel Winds
Lineup:
IV - Guitars, Bass Vocals
BR - Guitars
Mordance - Drums
VK - Bass
Record Label: Independent
     


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