Tuesday, April 16, 2013

... Old Chapel “Symptoms of Possession” (EP review)

As it often happens, some decent bands of any style can be found in the most unexpected places. For example in Ivanovo (Russian Federation) there is a band called Old Chapel. For three years they play canonical old school death/doom metal with noticeable predominance of death metal components. Their debut LP “Tales from the Churchyard” was published by Gris Records, and unfortunately this album go unnoticed. Meanwhile, however, the new four-songs EP called  “Symptoms of Possession” arrived in time.

I have already noted that elements of death metal predominate in their music, but it needs to be clarified: there are no any romantic things on “Symptoms of Possession”, roses are in the compost pit, cemetery crosses are turned upside down, graves are dug, and all who did rest in deep in the soil ransack around searching for locals, those locals of course who hadn’t been eaten by cannibals or who hadn’t been obsessed by madness of possession. The title track sounds uncompromisingly, rough and tough, the energy of death metal in this song is gloomy and mad; this is the energy of true possession! If you want some slow, viscous doom metal you’ll have to wait. “Witchgrave” is a real death/doom, raw and unholy. According to the guys the rawness is on purpose! I think that this rawness will not be a hindrance for true fans of such music. The song lasts for a little over nine minutes, the tempo changes sometimes to not get bored, and as for me the final middle tempo and punchy part of the song is really awesome.

At first glance “Excommunicated from Light” shows a great balance between tough death and sore doom, the growling fits the music perfectly, and the guitar shakes. But the second half of the song is harsh death metal extremism which later gives way to a striking measured fragment. The last track of “Symptoms of Possession” called “Maneater” is for fans of piercing, crushing death metal. All that is in the title of the song is reflected in its musical component. Moderately brutal, not very complicated but aggressive finale summarizes “Symptoms of Possession”

Frankly, it's difficult to describe the music of Old Chapel as death/doom; songs of “Symptoms of Possession” consist of middle temped death metal. There’s no melancholy, minimum of mental anguish, just anger and straightness. But all of this is not a problem for those who are used to this kind of music. If you like old horror movies, rough death metal with doom touch, do not be late, because a mess for your soul is already underway in Old Chapel.

words by Aleksei Evdokimov

Interview with Old Chapel:

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