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15.10.2021

VISTERY

Doomfall

Anmeldt av Eddie Rattlehead
(Independent, 2021)

Karakter: 4/6

Vistery_Doomfall.jpg Listening to the 4th album of the Belarusian death metal trio reminds me of my teenage Polish vodka drinking days with my late brother and his buddies. It was usually consumed in a dimly lit ground floor of somebody's murky apartment in a hot and humid environment using a single plastic cup full of warm vodka passed around quickly with two imperatives: "Drink up as you're blocking the glass" and "Gentlemen, frugally with the chaser", the latter usually a criminally small bottle of coke or orange soda. We might as well have had "Doomfall" playing in the background to complete the abomination of desolation. The chaser was a lot like melody for Vistery: frugal, unclear and savagely precious little as if to spite the overwhelming demand. But once you get over the initial shock and just take it for what it is: a by-the-numbers austere midpaced old school death in the vein of "The End Complete" Obituary (one of the most boring and overrated bestselling death metal records of all time) and Six Feet Under it's actually not bad (but not good, either) and, with additional applications you'll start identifying pockets of catchiness, although a mixed fragrance of rotten flesh, forsaken vegetables and decay without majesty will haunt you like my childhood forbidden ground floor cellar for all of its 11 tracks 41:15 minute duration, and the fact that a drum machine is used instead of a living breathing human being further dehumanizes and simultaneously sterilizes the sound.

The opener, "Fatalism", is one of the stronger tracks, its simple yet catchy chorus bringing Stuck Mojo's "Mental Meltdown" to mind, with enough variation to warrant repeated listens but the next few tracks seem to be at a task of making a better version of it and failing, although "Ossuary", with its surprising melodic hook, does have a potential howbeit ruined by lack of repetition. Things get finally more interesting on the Suffocationary "Soul Separator" even with the simplicity of the riffs similar to those found on Six Feet Under albums, but it is the Monstrosityic "Desolation" that deserves a 5/6 in its every minute as does the very similar "DeathInfection" with a cool riff at different tones recalling early Immolation. Overall, though, this music is as simple, groovy and forgettable as most Lamb Of God's "New American Gospel" and most of the time one cannot shake off the feeling as if Ivan "Paranoid" Smirnov (vocals), Alexey "Wicked" Kizillo (guitars, vocals) and Alexander Volvachev (bass) weren't even trying which is significantly strengthened by the lack of human drummer. For a band with a 10 year history and 4 full lenghts: "Procreation Of The Wicked" (2011), "Sinister Prophecy" (2012), "Death Is Dead" (2018), that's just bad business.

The 4th Vistery album, "Doomfall" may be awfully aptly titled but it is like the male model Zeus in "Under The Tuscany Sun" movie, not bad but not good, either. There are actually two tracks: "Ossuary" and the hardcorish "Echoes Of Decay" where drums lull me into a false sense of humanity but, besides them, the lack of alive drummer is a strong negative influence on making even the fastest parts (Possessed) lifeless, dull and sterile whereby even the "Chaos A.D." Sepultura stylings (Undead) are devoid of their power and thus it, the subsequent "Dominator" and the generic "Mind Rot" can rightly be called fillers.

Gentlemen, atmosphere, climate in death metal is important and you have that in spades but it must be balanced by depth and power of the production and this is, sadly, where you were found lacking. Finally, these songs could use more variety of pace and mood and, yes, having a human drummer, even a session drummer, could go a long way towards achieving that. I'm giving a 4/6 to encourage better effort next time.

https://vistery.by/en/


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