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Varechian - Tabula Rasa Ultima

Tabula Rasa Ultima
by Andrew Harvey at 07 February 2022, 9:04 AM

These guys are categorised as what I refer to as blackened death metal, they are called VARECHIAN and they came together in the winter season of 2020. The band are from the country of France, however their original name was actually VARECH when they released their debut album, COLDEAD MARBLE MEMORIES in 2016. Their status as a band was active in the early 1990’s then reactivated in the mid 2000’s and then once more in 2014 before their debut album was released two years later.

It was said that now with a new lineup this ‘melds some old school radical metal elements like seminal metal, grinding death metal, crossover thrash/hardcore together with some hectic rhythm and dark occult atmosphere’. In terms of their songwriting perhaps taking their lyrics for example cover ‘personal experiences, childhood trauma, all about interpretation and invocation of death, arcane spells and death magic’. The new album titled TABULA RASA ULTIMA is but a very diverse yet sublime mixture of thrash, hardcore, death metal or black metal all in one album starting with a soundscape track titled “Fucus Effluvium Varechian Genesis”.

Slow guitar more mellow, yet some harmonic tuning, angelic voices and the voice over or narrator speaking freely. Second track, “L’Ancien Monde '' speaks louder, guitar or drums especially with vocals cut through the mix sharply. The blend of thrash, death and hardcore is evident and each instrument has it’s role in the sound field. Personified by the rhythm of guitar, fast drumming and occult vocals, it’s a promising start indeed. Guitar ensues into wild beastly behaviour before the next track comes.

“Astrum Argentinum” with more aggressive vocals and guitar, is emphasised by the thrash groove set by drums plus guitar. The contrast between sections is well executed too. “Nekromanteion Of River Acheron” sets off with keyboard sound effects with evil vocals enduring and stretching each note to fill the dark atmosphere. Drums count in the rest of the group's talent and bass guitar with drums set the tone as well. Hardcore elements with death metal surrounds the listener into mass hysteria as the track rages on before an unusual synth based sound.

“Dead Tavern” with guitar varying in tone and using vibrato before drums come into play providing thrash/hardcore sounds to the max. Drums bring out the personality and attitude of the track as vocals take a breather here with a more progressive combination thundering all the way. The next track is “Still The Warmongers” signals the return of vocals to terrify the listener. Pulsating drums, guitar like a rampage of an oncoming storm of death/thrash metal shouting loud.

Vocals also are divided, maybe a delay effect but another belter of monstrous metal mania. “Mutant Humans Regression” with accented guitar perhaps some discord or disjointed rhythm from guitar or drums, guitar shrieking on accents. “So Sick, In Solaize” continues on with the previous guitar sound, drums and more complex rhythms making this track sensational madness in a good way. Vocals also get very interesting and meaner too as we go into the ninth track which is titled “Re-Entering Purgatory” a short but experimental piece.

Revolving sound effects, guitar feedback and various instrumentation. Sinister and satanic themes come to mind here as we move onto the penultimate for a second time is “Nekromanteion Of River Acheron”. After this is a trip-hop or electronic version of the sixth track except it’s called “Still The Warmongers(Cybercore Industrial Remix By Grosso Gadgeto)”.

This album is a great example of blackened death metal with elements of thrash, hardcore or doom metal too. The guitar and drums prove this and test the limits of how much can mix together. A great band with a hardcore attitude, hungry for more craving for your attention. I can safely say I have taken a good liking to blackened death metal but with this band they have amalgamated so many other styles into the mix and came out with a brilliant outcome.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Fucus Effluvium Varechian Genesis
2. L’Ancien Monde
3. Astrum Argentinum
4. Nekromanteion Of River Acheron
5. Dead Tavern
6. Still The Warmongers
7. Mutant Humans Regression
8. So Sick, In Solaize
9. Re-Entering Purgatory
10. Nekromanteion Of River Acheron (Bonus)
11. Still The Warmongers (Cybercore Industrial Remix By Grosso Gadgeto)
Mathrien D. Aka Ludo Putrid - Lead/Rhythm Guitar, Drums and Keyboards
Regis 7.7.7. Whyte - Vocals and Keyboards
Anton Supremacy - Guitar, Bass and Keyboard
Record Label: Sliptrick Records


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