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CD Review: Heresi – Psalm II: Infusco Ignis

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heresi psalmii"Hail the holy four pillars of uncreation: sodomy, abortion, suicide, and cannibalism!" So reads the "Manifest" on Heresi's website. Heresi is one Skamfer, who helped found black metal legends Ondskapt. However, he left the group due to mental illness, doing time in psychiatric wards. He's back now, and quite productive, unleashing the ripping Psalm I EP last year and now his first full-length, Psalm II. Evidently, Psalm III is already in the works for next year, as well as touring plans.

Psalm II consists of six tracks totalling about 28 minutes in length. The ride is short, but boy is it sweet. Skamfer sings, drums, and plays guitar, and damned if he doesn't kick ass at all of them. Songs range from blastbeat mayhem to doomy dirges, crackling with dark, nasty riffs that make one want to find the nearest church to burn down. Skamfer would encourage this: "[J]ust because you do not know how to play the guitar doesn't mean you're not fucking obligated to do your fair share of dirty Black Metal business. So, I sincerely incite all you Black Metal worshippers to criminal and self-destructive behaviour!" The dude is quite the soundbite machine.

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A little variation goes a long way here. Grooves and riffs keep changing, often subtly, and the drums have lots of fills to prevent the typical torpor that too many blastbeats bring. The vocals are scathing growls in Swedish, with just the right amount of reverb for ambience. What stands out most is the production. It strikes a perfect balance between polish and rawness; guitars bite, drums pound, and the whole thing feels like an evil battering ram. Wrapping up the package is appropriately ghoulish artwork from Wrest of Leviathan. This is a very special release no black metal fan should be without.

8/10

Heresi website
Hydra Head Records
Total Holocaust Records

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