Chaos Doctrine – And In The Beginning…They Lied

Chaos Doctrine – And In The Beginning…They Lied
Self-Released
Release Date: 25/06/2021
Running Time: 40:46
Review by Wallace Magri
9.5/10

Chaos Doctrine is a South African based band, that brings to us, in their sophomore album “And in the Beginning, They Lied”, a chaotic mixture of Extreme Metal music, guided by old school bay-area Thrash Metal, elements of Black Metal, technical sections similar to Death Metal and Industrial Metal programming fuelled with noise layers, to give the proper ambience to their partially conceptual album, with lyrics addressing themes of religion, corrupt politicians, mass media control within a very dystopian scenario.

Don’t get me wrong, the fact that Chaos Doctrine allow interactions among musical styles to create their sonority doesn’t mean that they are a band without musical direction or trying to appeal to a too wide audience. On this album the band has been able to move forward from their self-titled debut record, released in 2018, developing a very peculiar sonority, that possesses unique identity.

I’ll make things easier for the Ever Metal readers: You know a band called Slayer, right? So, put Slayer in the epicentre of the musical chaos delivered by Chaos Doctrine and we have the basis to start to describe the metal assault that awaits you here! As a matter of fact, they play a cover version of ‘South Of Heaven’ on the album  and, at the same time that they pay tribute to their main influence, they also had the ability to reactivate the rage of that seminal song, with an approach which is much rawer and more disturbing.

Disturbed is a good word to help to describe how I felt when I started closely listening to the nine original tracks (the Slayer’s cover is a bonus track) on the album. I noticed some slips in the mixing, but nothing that spoilt my enjoyment of “And In The Beginning…They Lied”.

This is because they have reached the skill to keep the listener well fed during the listening experience – a hard thing to do these days when people have plenty of songs (and other things) to distract them and they see no point on wasting time listening to a whole album.

What we have here is 36 minutes of very well arranged, original, heavy music and it sounds clear that the band took their time in the composition of each one of these songs, making it tough for me to find some highlights to talk about in more detail. I will say that the opening intro, ‘And In The Beginning…’, followed by ‘Blood Serpent God’ are a superb way to kick off the album: Industrial Metal elements to help with the gloomy ambience, Fear Factory style, but, when the guitar/bass/drum assault kicks in it, personally, relates to old school Extreme Metal, in a time when bands weren’t quite aware of the distinguishing elements amongst Thrash/Death/Black Metal. In the 80’s bands like Possessed, Slayer, Exodus, Kreator, Destruction etc were creating a new musical genre based on the things they were used to listening to, and giving their best efforts to turn it more brutal and unpalatable – by their own means.

That is the same sensation I had listening to ‘Blood Serpent God’, because Chaos Doctrine pick various heavy metal element that are needed for their own music benefit – in this case, old school paced Thrash/Black Metal with a brutal chorus (reminiscent of Sepultura’s “Arise”-era) and Industrial Metal interventions.

Now, welcome to the Slayer side of the story, delivered expertly in ‘Black Friday Bedlam’ – a kick ass old-school Thrash Metal track guided by strong guitar riffs and ferocious drum and bass. I also enjoyed the duel between the screamed vocals, that are guttural as fuck, and the other vocal line, that evokes Tom Araya at his best!

Even though the songs are built around the talent of all the musicians, I think that what gives them the old-school flavour is the guitar work, because it is not full of ultra-technical playing, as many shredders use these days. The solos have more feeling, helping in the transition of the songs, like in ‘Father Grigori’.

I think that with these tips, you can proceed on your own to the rest of the songs on “In the Beginning…They Lied”, whose quality speaks for itself. Now, you may ask me why I rated the album 9.5, if it is that good. Well, the answer is because I am sure that they will come back with new releases that are going to beat this one. They are a young band, very focused on their musical creation. So, I’ll save my 10 for the next one!

‘Blood Serpent God’ feat. Anna Hel (Official Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. And In The Beginning…
02. Blood Serpent God (Feat. Anna Hel)
03. Black Friday Bedlam (Feat. Jörgen Sandström)
04. Harlot
05. Nocturna Mors
06. Father Grigori
07. The Rite
08. Christ Church Horizon
09. They Lied
10. South Of Heaven (Bonus Slayer Cover)

LINE-UP:
Daniel Burger “Dr D” – Vocals
Alec Surridge – Guitar
Rory Townes – Drums
Phil Carstens – Bass, Backing Vocals

LINKS:

Previous EMQ’s Interview with Chaos Doctrine:

Chaos Doctrine ‘Harlot’ Visualiser Video – Ever Metal Premiere:

Chaos Doctrine ‘Enjoy The Silence’ Video – Ever Metal Premiere:

Chaos Doctrine Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Wallace Magri and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

A Nameless Dread – The First Nothing

A Nameless Dread – The First Nothing
Self-Released
Release Date: 31/10/2020
Running Time: 27:36
Review by Dark Juan
8/10

My Legions! Fear not for your exile for the good of the realm shall soon be over! Then you can go back outside and continue your work of subverting the word of the False God while you are rampaging around Heron Foods and Iceland and Bargain Booze (or CK’s if you’re in Wales) buying anything that catches your fancy for Yule, and checking out the arse of that attractive checkout attendant on the way past after making such a dent in your plastic, you’ll be paying for it until the Rapture. It just so happens I might have the soundtrack for the madness of Yuletide (I refuse to use the name of the False Lord with regard to this time of year. I have no time for imported Middle Eastern death cults. Transubstantiation, indeed… Our Lord Belial would be mocked unmercifully if His minions wandered around claiming eating a bit of dry bread and supping some wine turns into a bit of prime evil rump steak and Holy vampirism. I mean, just fuck off) in the form of this South African extreme metal band named A Nameless Dread. See what I did there?

Yes, Africa. Not a continent that is YET currently renowned for heavy metal music. However, we at Ever Metal are committed to sharing with you metal from across the globe and especially from underrepresented nations. There will be more from Africa, I can promise you, because from what I can judge from AND (I’m not writing it a million times so sod off) there is a rich and untapped vein of talent in that there continent. Anyway, A Nameless Dread are from Johannesburg and quote that they have influences from cosmic horror to gore. These are interests that Dark Juan can only encourage.

So, yeah, this is my first foray into the world of African metal and I’m excited by it, so far. AND play a form of extreme metal that has leanings towards the earlier death metal end of the spectrum with added At The Gates and Deicide. Vocalist (to say singer would not be strictly accurate considering what he does with his voice) Rhett Freeman unleashes the kind of vocal apocalypse that would delight any fan of early death metal, being as he appears to be able to cover a range from vomiting up his own anal tract to screaming like there’s sharp stuff being jabbed into his eyes. He has a fine voice for this style of music. The guitar work of Damian Buys is also punchy and excellent, and to his eternal credit, he does not just rely on mid paced chugging. There’s some interesting and unusual discordant riffing in places that lifts AND above the usual pile. The songs are all fresh and original and all sound different to each other (Six Feet Under’s last record was a shocker for the songs sounding the same). The bass work is also satisfyingly huge and the drums complex and engaging. However, the production (I know I bang on about production a lot but it’s important for your listening pleasure) is woolly as fuck, man. The guitar work sits far too far forward, the vocals also and the bass sound, although loud as fuck and guaranteed to shake all your organs loose, overpowers the drumming to the point all you can hear is crash cymbal, a bass drum that sounds like it is being played by a wet and limp herring rather than a pedal and an absolutely inaudible snare drum. This is a shame because there are some lovely passages, especially the solo on the opening salvo, entitled ‘The Great Unclean’, which opens with some gentle guitar work, very briefly before the band get bored and instead hit you like a Rooivalk attack helicopter salvoing rockets at your sorry and soon to be violently exploded arse. A Nameless Dread then up the ante a bit on second song ‘Enter Chaos’ with a break that is almost fucking jazzy, whilst still being heavy enough to grind your balls to fluid. Rhett shows his versatility here as well, ranging from subterranean to stratospheric on the vocal front. ‘When God Blinks’ has some lovely African influenced soloing, too.

So, it’s fair to say I’m a bit of a fan of A Nameless Dread then. For my first foray into African metal, this is a fucking good record. The rest of Africa has some work to do to maintain this standard. While it’s not the most inventive record, AND have taken extreme metal (a genre that frequently disappears up its own arse in a welter of identikit riffs and roars) and kept it varied and interesting. The sub-28 minute running time for seven songs also shows the intent of the band to keep it short, punchy and meaningful. And while the production could be charitably described as a bit rough, it does manage to give the band and the songs a raw, dangerous quality that is missing from more polished releases. This album oozes sustained threat and implied violence and that can only be a good thing, boys and girls and everybody of all other genders. You could do a lot worse than buy this record as it is head and shoulders over the recent releases of some of the more established bands in the world (Six Feet Under, I am looking at YOU!)

I like it. I want more, thank you please.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Die gepatenteerde Dark Juan – bloedspatgraderingstelsel – Google Translate is a wonderful thing because I shamefully know ZERO Afrikaans) awards a worthy 8/10 for a good, but flawed record that shows considerable promise for the future. Heavy as a pair of lead underpants.

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Great Unclean
02. Enter Chaos
03. Rot With Me
04. When God Blinks
05. Bleached Bone
06. The Resurrectionist

07. Cold Black

LINE-UP:
Rhett (I keep wanting to put Butler, but I am resisting!) Freeman – Vocals
Desmond Cook – Drums
Damian Buys – Guitar
Tim Botes – Bass

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.