French Death/Black group Necrowretch return for their fourth full length that attempts to break out of the limited confines that have defined them for the entirety of their twelve year existence. Though there is valour in trying fix one’s errors no matter how late. Necrowretch strive to do this in the worst way possible.
Riffs oscillate between standard standard Death and Black metal tropes while short melodies float on top for the most part. While the riffs do form the main backbone of the songs here, they aren’t the main attraction. That honour is given to the many tricks that stand out on each song. Flashy solos, extended acoustic guitar segments, unconventional vocals are the distinguishing factors. This is reminiscent of what Absu did on their eponymous album but without the instrumental flair or Proscriptor’s dogmatic madness. These defining passages are easily cast aside due to the actual lack of substance surrounding them. Only “The Ones from Hell” has an actual attempt at a riff that almost works but falls to the level of the other tricks as there is nothing around to support it.
The flow of the songs is viscous as the band make every transition heard. There is no transition between riffs that isn’t explicitly stated without a sudden change of tempo or a break that is held in together by a mundane melody. The riffs in themselves revolve around two note motifs that are injected in the ideas of better bands resulting in very stale riffs that don’t convey anything more than background noise. “Lucferian Sovranty” has a two note pattern that relies on the vibrato trick that Inquisition popularized which shows how boring this album is in general.
While there is nothing of value in this record, it serves as a reminder that a few cheap illusions won’t work if the rest of the music is already disillusioning. Bands like Blood Incantation and Wilderun have built their fanbases not on gimmicks but on a combination of tricks in otherwise unremarkable songs and this method of composing is now trickling down to other bands in the fundeground. Gone are the obvious gimmicks related to lyrical themes, appearance or caricatural compositional elements. This decade marks the birth of bands playing familiar sounds but with the occasional maneuver to convince the listener that there is more to the music than there really is.