Deviser – Evil Summons Evil

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It took almost twelve years for the Hellenic black metal cult Deviser to return to the international pantheon. Alongside bands such as Rotting Christ, Varathron and Kawir. Deviser had a great career in the early years of the Hellenic black metal movement and released two classic albums 'Unspeakable Cults' and 'Transmission to Chaos' in 1996 and 1998 which have set a melodic penchant to the band’s trademark. The band returns with a new lineup fronted by the original bassist and vocalist Matt Hnaras, guitarist/keyboardist Nick Christogiannis and new guitarist Vag Kastanas.

The fifth album ‘Evil Summons Evil’ is the most aggressive piece of modern black metal since the classic albums. Frontman Matt Hnaras and Nick Christogiannis have clawed their way into vigorous energetic tempos. The opening track ‘Death Is Life Eternal’ kicks off with driving guitars pulling off the heat of the blazing tremolos. The ten songs in the album thrive on the ebb and flow of the symphonic orchestra. You can sense a revolutionary zeal, maturity and self-confidence in the songwriting department. Shifting away from the traditional sound of the Hellenic black metal, Deviser has raised the bar high.

While bombastic, heavy and dark in scale ‘Evil Summons Evil’ delivers fresh material from the trio: you will confront the darker side of this grandiose orchestra where the guitars add epic solos and heavy torrential riffs that go along with the majestic orchestral passages. The dichotomy between the mid-paced and the fast-paced tempos brings forward many hooks in the following track ‘Cold Comes the Night’ when the pungent guitars reverberate aggressive rhythms and melodies that remain a constant feature of the music. Untamed violence imbues each song with aggressive dynamic tempos to ensure harmony between the catchy guitar melodies and the ominous vocals.

While it’s clear that Deviser has adopted the methods of Rotting Christ-styled riffing, the rhythm guitars and the melodies seem to resemble the modern melodic affair of Varathron. Tracks like ‘Absence of Heaven’ show the qualities of the composition and the hooky guitar melodies and the orchestra often play a catchy element. On the other hand, the orchestral arrangements act as a beautiful atmosphere for the instrumental track ‘Tenebrae’. ‘Evil Summons Evil’ gives a new trademark for the band, although the songs take a similar tone. ‘Of Magick’ follows slowing the pace and the dualism of the female soprano and the harsh black metal vocals lay strong emphasis on the driving guitars, adding atmosphere as the epic moments shine through the mid-paced tempo.

However, once the atmosphere fills the thrilling air of grandeur in ‘Evoking The Moon Goddess’ the blasting drums and the rhythm guitars kick in total momentum as the fast-paced sections slowly unravel the beauty of the composition. The guitar work is probably one of the finest features of the album. Therefore, Deviser keeps the same momentum in engaging the listener with potent riffs. There is also a cinematic aspect to the album which seems quite inspiring though the songs seem interconnected with a refined composition touch.

The second half of the album holds the gimmickry of the acerbic guitar riffs. We see the drums transition more often to sudden blast beats on ‘Where Angels Fear To Tread’. In spite of the slow dramatic start of this song the drums offer fast-paced sections that somehow combine with melodies and aggression. Epic Hellenic riffs ebb and flow drawing glorious themes of the Mediterranean art of black metal, heavily reverberating in ‘Sky Burial’. The tremolos strike the right tone that offers some of the best moments in this track when the swaggering riffs and the pounding drums highlight the work of the orchestra.

Serpent God’ then draws organic chemistry with the raw guitars setting up a catchy mixture of the keyboards leading into an atmospheric and symphonic vibe that will revive your memory of the early Hellenic black metal albums like Rotting Christ’s ‘Non-Serviam’. Therefore, when the keyboards are often utilized, it adds subtle layers to the music. Despite its modern sound production ‘Evil Summons Evil’ still feels inspired by classic black metal. The album’s closure ‘When The Lights Went Out’ is full of guitar hooks. In general, the guitar melodies determine the creative complexity of the band by fusing fast-paced drums, grand orchestra and catchy lead guitars that are so damned irresistible. The rebirth of Deviser clearly brings new scope for the fans to indulge themselves with their unique songwriting prowess, hence displaying the unparalleled skills of the band in bringing ferocity, harmony and lots of guitar swagger into each of the ten tracks.


  • Music / Songwriting 9/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 8/10
  • Mix / Production 10/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 8/10
  • Originality 9/10

‘Evil Summons Evil’ demonstrates the modern essence of the mighty Hellenic black metal. Deviser might have stepped out from its roots with a 5th album that is both gloriously immense and powerful!

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