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Rituals Of The Dead Hand - With Hoof and Horn

Rituals Of The Dead Hand
With Hoof and Horn
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 28 May 2021, 12:42 PM

It’s not usual to have a specific label called ‘Doom Black Metal’. It could be described as the fusion between the rough and darkened approach of Black Metal with slow paced tempos from Doom Metal. Obviously there are many bands using such fusion, but they’re labeled only as Black Metal bands. And from Belgium, another good name that plays in such way: RITUALS OF THE DEAD HAND with their second album, “With Hoof and Horn”.

Their music is really a blend between the nasty approach of Black Metal (based on the Second Wave of the genre, that one born in the late 80’s and early 90’s) with slow rhythms. It sounds crude and aggressive in some parts, but there are more atmospheric/ambient parts with funereal ambiences. It’s not difficult to hear the use of contrasts (especially on the vocals due the use of clean tunes in some moments, as can be heard on “Inception”). The music is full of a morbid and funereal energy, and can hook many fans. Jan Lathouwers worked on the mixing and mastering of the album (and worked on the recording sessions of the drums as well), and the goal was to create something that could make the band sounds nasty and crude, funeral and atmospheric, but with a clean insight. Of course, it can be better on their next release, but are fine for now.

They prefer to express their musical ideas with long songs, so be prepared, because “Sulphur” (full of contrasts of the rawness of Black Metal with ambient parts, and with nasty guitar riffs), “Inception” (fine vocals, with shrieks and clean tunes contrasting in many moments, along with a very good and solid work on the rhythms), and “Vuurstaeck” (where the Black Metal side of their music becomes more evident, and the work of bass guitar and drums is really very good) will hook you all.

“With Hoof and Horn” isn’t a trivial album at all, and to deal with it sometimes can be hard. But as long as the listener becomes used to it, more will be seduced by RITUALS OF THE DEAD HAND’s work.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Praesemino
2. Sulphur
3. Inception
4. The Defiling Days
5. Vuurstaeck
Lykaios - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards
Beleth - Bass, Backing Vocals
Isangrim - Drums, Keyboards, Samples
Record Label: Independent


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