"Seven Chalices"

(Norma Evangelium Diaboli)

01. Whore Mass
02. Domains of Darkness and Ancient Evil
03. Interlude (Arabian title)
04. Morbid Devil of Pestilence
05. Interlude (Sanskrit title)
06. Infernal Dance of the Wicked
07. Interlude (Cuneiform title)
08. Seven Chalices of Vomit and Blood
09. Qliphotic Necromancy
10. The Abomination of Desolation
11. The Origin of Death

RATING: 8/10

"Seven Chalices" from Spain's TEITANBLOOD is evil incarnate. It is old school death metal that drowns the listener in the muck of AUTOPSY and frightens to the point of paralysis with its long sections of bone-chilling atmospherics and terrifying effects — not mere interludes either, but epic exercises in horror. And damn, do they ever drench their death with filth, doom, and decadence. The concoction is one of the more unique takes on brutal, old-school death that I've heard in a while. It is just plain depraved.

In addition to Chris Refeirt's troops of doom-death there are elements in the sound that recall everyone from REPULSION to NECROVATION and early INCANTATION. The rhythms rumble and buck, the riffs are surprisingly effective, and the vocals are reverb-drenched and chaotic, all of which also brings to mind the semi-controlled chaos of CATHOLICON. I am not even sure if "vocal" is the correct term in this context; it is more like the belches and cries heard from the lair of a demon bloated from a gourmet meal of mortals. As for the guitar soloing, it is nothing short of off-the-rails insanity. The leads shimmy, shake, snake, and dive bomb, a kind of free-for-all of soloing madness that smashes to bits any semblance of order. Even with the bizarre descents into black mass ritual and terrifying sonic escapades the momentum is never lost. The band marries the two components in a fashion that is most genuine and convincing. It is psychotic I tell you, psychotic!

While there is obviously familiarity in the death metal approach, "Seven Chalices" is not wholly unoriginal either. The band has its own thing going on here and has created a work that is not for the tech-death crowd, the deathcore imitators, or those that desire some level of melody and convention in their extreme music. TEITANBLOOD's attack on "Seven Chalices" is a rabid one and its all-encompassing approach to the deliverance of evil is nearly without parallel. The brutality is shocking and the evil is undiluted. Sickness has a name and it is TEITANBLOOD. You cannot fake this sort of thing.


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