DEATHSTENCH: Massed in Black Shadows CD Black Plague
There’s very little to separate the release of Black Plague and its mother label, ‘Malignant Records’. The thinnest sliver of margins if truth be told, as the parent label more often than not sometimes matches and outweighs its child in the brutality stakes.
Deathstench tick all the boxes as far as Dark Ambient tinged with Power Electronics goes and occasionally drape these influences over a wall of guttural vocals and drone infested doom guitars. ‘Massed in Black Shadows’, is one of those surging releases that move forward like a landslide, with rarely a break to stop the tide of slurry amassing at its final destination; momentum being the most operative word I can use to describe the effect of their album has on the listener.
For the most part I expected something a tad harsher; the overtly Grindcore artwork, whilst quite apt in some respects, is ever so deceiving as to what is truly on offer. Saturated in ink this isn’t a bad piece of work overall, but does lack the spark of anything truly amazing and for me the cesspit of noise and bleak drones lack the edge in production to truly capitalise on what could have been a monstrous vision of sickening, puss dripping end times.
SEWER GODDESS: Disciples of Shit: Live Waste CD Black Plague
Released on the sub label of Malignant Records I knew I was in for something fairly nasty, if not for the title of the album itself.
Opening up with ‘Condemned is the Unborn One’, Boston’s Sewer Goddess treat us to grinding bass driven guitars and desperate female fronted wailings, that filter vocal samples through a wall of psychosis; as the title suggests, these recordings are taken from various live shows which have been compiled over a two year period.
This is a fairly visceral release with crashing percussion, screeching feedback and droning guitars which are laid heavy with distortion; unfortunately though, sometimes the vocals seem a little misplaced without any visual content to compliment the live performance and I do feel in some respects, if this had been an enhanced CD with footage taken from the various shows, it would have added thematically to the overall experience.
Track four ‘Chained to the Cage of Existence’, is a highlight of the album however; with its throbbing drone-work, it oozes atmosphere displaying just the right amount of controlled chaos that eventually erupts into a volcanic rage of hellish screaming torment.
Not altogether a bad release that should be taken for what it is, but falling short because live actions are best experienced in person than on your hi-fi and this misses out on a fair bit.