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sabato 29 novembre 2014

Permanent Midnight - Under the Blood Moon

#FOR FANS OF: Black Metal, Sathanas, Summoning, Caladan Brood
Releasing original music years after the band’s termination date is hardly ever a sign of a quality release, though thankfully this final release from the defunct Pennsylvania crew that comes a full seven years after they disbanded does buck the trend somewhat. While there are plenty of examples as to why the band is no longer around, namely the influx of celestial keyboards and utterly dragging paces, there’s times where it seems like the band did have some sense of direction as to where they were going. The raw production here does make for a really dirty, gritty atmosphere, the riffs at times do manage a rather energetic kick with the punchy inclusion of a primitive Death Metal-style lurch that’s insanely hypnotic and there’s times when the mixture of those celestial keyboards mix quite well with the charging Black Metal atmosphere. That still doesn’t make for all that impressive works, though, when brought up against the flaws in those rather dreary paces that run throughout this, which are all brought about by the sprawling keyboards which tend to cause this one to slow to a crawl that causes the whole song to come crashing down into a really bland and overall boring trend in these sections. As well, this does cause the music to really seem so scattershot and disorganized that it impacts the music more than it really should by throwing all sorts of material around without letting one stick out and this is what ultimately brings this down. Opener ‘Wolf’ may not be the prototypical intro with plodding tempos and a real lack of energy, but the dark, crushing riffs and heavy rhythms along ravenous riff-work do give this some solid points. ‘Fallen from Grace’ is a better attempt at this with a faster set of riffs, utterly dark, pounding drumming and only minor amounts of slower-tempo riffing that at the very least remains chaotic enough to make it enjoyable, and ‘Sex and Gore’ works as yet another short, frantic blaster with plenty of pounding drumming and frantic riffing throughout. With yet another sampled intro, ‘Carnivorous Lunar Activities’ makes up for that nicely with some rather heavy riffs and an impressive drumming array while the inclusion of symphonic-styled keyboards adds a nice balance to the raw chaos. ‘The Evil in the Forest’ is even more experimental with the classical piano compositions and ambient riffing alongside the traditional heavy riffing and pounding drumming and the results equal the album’s best track quite easily. ‘They Feed in the Night’ attempts this as well but doesn’t come off as good due to the heavier use of droning riff-work and dragging paces that hold this one down. The overall bland ‘Set in an Apocalyptic Sunrise’ is yet another of these droning keyboard-heavy dirges that really lacks a lot and tends to come off quite overlong for its own good with bland paces, bland riffs and bland keyboard notes. ‘Saved by Darkness’ does manage to come off quite well against the dreary track that precedes it and does get a little more energy here while the dragging final half does tend to really drag this out for a whimper of a finale. That tends to run rampant throughout this one and really lowers this one. (Don Anelli)

(Paragon Records - 2013)
Score: 60