Monday, 21 December 2015

Sacrocurse - ‘Destroying Chapels’ EP (Review)

By: Daniel Jackson

Album Type: EP
Date Released: 15/01/2016
Label: Iron Bonehead Productions



The formula Sacrocurse use is well-worn and time-tested, which is also to say familiar and less than innovative, but they also manage to produce a personality within their songs that sets them apart from hundreds of other bands working in a similar sound; this band is absolutely fucking lethal and when I look at my favorite EPs for 2016, I can virtually guarantee you that ‘Destroying Chapels’ will be on that list.

‘Destroying Chapels’ LP//DD track listing:

1. Total Devastation
2. Sacrocurse Temple
3. Destroying Chapels
4. Total Destruction (Bathory Cover)
Sacrocurse is:

ZK | Guitar, Vocals
SW | Bass
LZ | Drums

The Review:

Truth be told, Sacrocurse’s 2014 debut album ‘Unholier Masters’ slipped under my radar, something I now regret immensely, because this band is absolutely fucking lethal. ‘Destroying Chapels’ is everything I want out of an orthodox death metal album. It sounds devastating, there’s a fair amount of atmosphere, and riffs you think about long after you’ve last heard them. The formula Sacrocurse use is well-worn and time-tested, which is also to say familiar and less than innovative, but they also manage to produce a personality within their songs that sets them apart from hundreds of other bands working in a similar sound.

‘Destroying Chapels’ is criminally short, falling shy of the fifteen minute mark, but its brief duration is absolutely brimming with top notch bestial death metal. When I say it’s familiar, anybody who is well-acquainted with Canadian legends Blasphemy and similar bands should have a decent idea of what to expect here, though they’re by no means a clone band. Sacrocurse mix things up quite a bit more, at least in terms of the mood the music conveys, with the title track being the best example. The title track, at under three minutes, covers a lot of ground, with the opening thirty seconds being focused on building ominous atmosphere over driving drums, before exploding into blasting and chaos, before returning back to the previous, more controlled tempo.

The only real issue I have with ‘Destroying Chapels’ is that the recording quality for their cover of “Total Destruction” from Bathory’s all-time classic “The Return” is somewhat weaker than the rest of the EP, losing some of the heft from the production on the original songs. Still, looking at the cover as an isolated song, the band does a really nice job of taking the song and finding a way to make it work within their established sound, even if the thinner sound of it is the first thing you’re likely to pick up on.

Even accounting for the inconsistency in production from the first three songs and the Bathory cover, Sacrocurse have left a lasting impact with ‘Destroying Chapels’. If you have an interest in this style at all, I’d consider this release an absolute necessity when it comes out in January. The performances are too strong and the songwriting is so dead on, that it simply will not be denied. When I look at my favorite EPs for 2016, I can virtually guarantee you that ‘Destroying Chapels’ will be on that list.

‘Destroying Chapels’ is available digitally here and on LP here in January.

Band info: Facebook

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