Album Title: Abhorrent Dreams of the End
Label: Bird of Ill Omen
This is the second demo from Doombringer, a Polish band playing black/death metal.
The lead guitars on this demo have a sharp, biting edge, one which nicely complements the crunchy rhythm guitars, ever-present bass, and low-end-heavy drums. The varied, echoing vocals are just distant enough to give them a sense of mystery, and the occasional synths are tasteful and subtle. Unfortunately, there's some unevenness in the volume level now and again, though that might just be my copy of the tape...
If this demo is any indication, Doombringer specializes in mid-paced songs packed full of evil, catchy riffs. Goatlord is an obvious point of comparison, though this band seldom gets quite that slow; the eerie, off-kilter lead work here also reminds me of old Greek and Czech black metal bands ("Of the Ancient Curse" has an excellent Varathron-esque atmosphere). There's no single band I can cite here, though; Doombringer's impeccable timing and excellent ear for dark, mesmerizing rhythms elevate this band far beyond mere recycling. "Darkside Calls" is a fine example: between the top-notch drumming and eerie, point-counterpoint synth and guitar lines, this is one of the most perfect tracks I've heard in a while. The band's dual vocal sections are also worthy of praise -- they're exploited to maximum atmospheric effect on this demo, yet never overused.
This is a top-notch demo, easily one of the best of 2010. Fans of Necros Christos, Grave Miasma, and Witchrist should be especially eager to check this band out, but I think it'll appeal to just about anyone who enjoys dark, mid-paced blackened death metal.
Standout Tracks: "Red Vapour Fills the Skull of Cadaver", "Darkside Calls"