Cult Burial – Cult Burial
Release Date: 06/11/2020
Running Time: 43:53
Review by Steven Hooke
I’ve been pondering an intro for the debut Cult Burial album for the last 30 minutes now, including multiple rewrites and restructurings, but I’ve settled on taking inspiration from the London three-piece and getting straight into it in the same vein as opener ‘Dethroner’, which explodes in, complete with a guttural war scream, pounding blast beats, and just a general feeling of apocalyptic disaster. For a complete experience, read that first paragraph again, only now imagine a West Country bumpkin screaming at you as you read. Similar vibes.
Cult Burial’s sound can best be described as an amalgam of death, doom and black metal, one of the few times an umbrella term like “extreme metal” can be used generously due to the nature of how the band effortlessly meander from one end of their sound to another. As mentioned, ‘Dethroner’ is an impactful opener that delves into the world of blackened death metal as Simon Langford’s leering tremolo picking sets as the backdrop to César Moreira’s grotesque vocal delivery. For the chorus-y parts, the multi-layered growls give those sections so much more weight and impact in what is shaping up early to be an absolute corker of an album.
As you progress through the album, there is rarely a time where it lets up. Again, the effortless transitions from slow, riff-heavy doom metal into raging old school death metal into shrilling black metal is astounding. It is in the death/doom moments when Simon can show off his chops as a guitarist, etching in Pantera-esque riffs during walking stomps to add texture to songs like ‘Moribund’, ‘Chaos’ and ‘Forever’, or discordant high-range licks in the likes of ‘Abyss’ and ‘Kill’ to add to the enjoyable uncomfortability as well as a bit of NWOBHM flair.
In this venn diagram that the band have cultivated for themselves, where common genre overlaps of death/doom and blackened death are already spoken for, even a blackened doom hybrid can be found, as the dirged stomps are often met by the classic high-pitched tremolo of black metal, add to that the lingering, high-end delays and bends that act as air raid sirens to the warzone riffs below.
Cult Burial’s debut self-titled album is a thunderous opening gambit for the trio, a scintillatingly evil display of crushing extreme metal that makes such great use of classic tropes and bending them to fit a modern songwriting structure. Never settling to just have one identity, being dark and depraved whilst still sounding sharp and crisp, it’s an insanely hot start for the lads.
César Moreira – Lead Vocals
Simon Langford – Guitars, Drums
Rick – Bass
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