Bands: Heretic Rites and Black Viper
Albums: In Satan’s Claws, Storming with Vengeance Demo 2016
Genres: Doom Metal/Rock, Speed Metal
Heretic Rites – In Satan’s Claws (Independent)
Up first is the second demo from this Serbian doom/psych rock outfit, which I’ve covered previously through their debut demo Hiding is so Futile. In Satan’s Claws amps up the already strong doom elements, taking the band in a much closer territory to the Electric Wizard, reverb soaked doom that influences them, the opening track even including a very Ozzy Osbourne esque “Alright Now!” showing off the doom elements of this band. Much like in Hiding the vocal delivery brings to mind the reverb soaked high register delivery of Salem’s Pot, and the the fuzz drenched guitars make a return once again, although there isn’t as much cohesion issue between the vocals and instrumentation like on Hiding, with the more biker punk riffage and rapid drumming of Boot Knife Sacrifice working with the vocals. Return to the Castle once again drops into the doom territory, with slower doom and wails making up the meat of the track, giving a heavy brooding atmosphere fitting of the pulpy occult album cover. Holy Place closes the demo off with a more energetic swagger, hitting more psych rock and biker punk tones with the riffs and drumming, as well as featuring vocals which reach into harsher realms than the rest of the reverb drenched vocal displays. Overall this demo is more good sounding occult doom/rock, and at Name Your Price on bandcamp, definitely worth checking out for doom fans.
Black Viper – Storming with Vengeance (Independent)
This is the debut demo from Norwegian speed metal band Black Viper and man does this demo rip, though being a sideproject of members from Gouge, Deathhammer and Nekromantheon, that’s not at all surprising, especially not when the title track kicks things into gear, rip-roaring guitar riffs and rapid fire drumming burst forth, combined with some of the more hectic speed metal shrieks I’ve heard in a while. The vocalist surprisingly enough is the only member without previous listed metal experience, not that it matters because his intensity matches the vocal intensity of Deathhammer’s shriekier moments, especially on the delivery of STORMING WITH VENGEEAAANCE and the lead vocal entry into Metal Blitzkrieg. None of the three tracks here display any significant deficiencies, retaining a strong level of ferocity while being highly catchy and riff power to get one air guitaring like a moron. Freedom’s Reign ends the demo off as the longest song with the most refrained attitude of the demo but makes up for it with an insanely catchy refrain and lead work.
100% recommended, hella keen to see where these lads take Black Viper next and if they can fight off the quality drop of a similarly intense speed metal band between demo and debut (here’s looking at you Ranger).