QAYIN REGIS – Doctrine

QAYIN REGIS – Doctrine

This 4-track debut album by the Spanish black metal occultists Qayin Regis turned out to be a pretty damn wicked surprise to yours truly. Its intriguing and deeply unsettling artwork was instantly appealing and I had a feeling that I was in for a morose treat as I pressed play, which, I am happy to report, was exactly the case.

The four long compositions that constitute “Doctrine” move seamlessly back and forth between fast, intense parts and slow, creepy sections that sound as if they were spawned in the darkest corners of the netherworld. The way in which the various elements and different components flow together and enhance each other is admirable, and the diversity of the material (pitch black and chillingly haunting from beginning to end though it may be) deserves praise as well. The ritualistic nature of the song material is where its true strength and beauty lies, and it is undoubtedly one of the primary reasons why this is such a compelling listening experience. This stuff just sucks you in and I strongly recommend that you use headphones when trying to absorb its many subtle shades and nuances.

Suitably raw and yet sufficiently defined in terms of each instrument in the mix, certain parts of “Doctrine” recall the brilliant Kriegsmaschine and Cult of Fire whereas other aspects of the record bring to mind the more dissonant aspects of Aosoth and Mayhem’s “Ordo ad Chao”. However, the most important thing to take away from this review is that we are dealing with a richly layered piece of work with many blackened textures to it, and it is drenched in a dark and depraved atmosphere from start to finish. Listening to it is indeed akin to witnessing a forbidden ritual.

Overall, “Doctrine” is quality black metal performed with skill and boasting many cool and clever arrangements not to mention great melodies throughout. Definitely recommended if for some reason you reach the conclusion January is not quite bleak or unpleasant enough for you.

Album highlight and standout track: the epic album closer “Deo Aironis”.