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CD Review: Obscurus Advocam – Verbia Daemonicus

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obscurusadvocam verbiadaemonicus"Obscurus Advocam" and "Verbia Daemonicus" are evidently improper Latin for "Invocation of Darkness" and "Speech of the Devil."  Latin is the official language of the Catholic church – perhaps it's black metal to skewer it?  Classical studies (or lack thereof) aside, this French band fulfills its verbal pontification.

Stunningly, this album is a debut.  It isn't the sound of a band finding itself, but of one grabbing black metal by the balls and saying, "Man up!"  No guitars that sound like blown speakers, no men sounding like witches.  Instead, the production is big and full, with basslines flowing fluidly underneath.  Midrange growls roar forth the requisite dread, but guitars dominate here.

Midpaced and melodic is the M.O., with snaky leads and sinister jangles.  This is a master class in translating darkness to guitar; pace, power, atmosphere, and mystery – these riffs have it all.  Commentators sometimes differentiate "black metal" and "heavy metal," but here they are one.  Songs stoically trudge through doomy riffs, blasting only when necessary.  This is like the Iraq war, but good – slow, endless, deadly.


Obscurus Advocam on MySpace
Battle Kommand Records

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