The U.S. progenitors of cavernous death metal act Incantation return with their most anticipated album. Over the past thirty years of existence, John McEntee and his fellow mates have been churning out some of the sickest profane interpretation of death/doom metal. Within the death metal genre, their musical influences have extends beyond their time especially on the modern death metal groups such as Dead Congregation, Disma, Grave Miasma, Cruciamentum and etc. Incantation’s first studio albums “Onward to Golgotha” and “Mortal Throne of Nazarene” were both masterpieces of a distorted symphony of doom-laden riffs. Throughout their musical career, the band has forged its own measureless platform structured in eleven monumental albums. Their recent outputs such as Vanquish in Vengeance, and Dirges of Elysium, contained much of the same cavernous air of putridity and profanity. Since 1992 their musical principalities focused on creating an obscure murky sound while the guitar’s main sound is orchestrated by thick and sludgy riffs, hammering drums layered with ghoulish growls. The current line-up is fronted by John McEntee (guitars, vocals), Kyle Severn (drums), and Chuck Sherwood (bass guitars) and Sonny Lombardozzi as the lead guitarist who recently joined the formation.
Sect of Vile Divinities doesn’t only explore the band’s foray into old school death metal but rather showcases the slow doomy passages that add depth to the listening experience. The opening track “Ritual Impurity” (Seven of the Sky Is one) demonstrates an up-tempo variation with the guitars exuding blasphemous riffs molded into their own signature style. The guitars on the following track “Propitiation” plods through the slow rhythmic doom pace setting into the murky realm of darkness. Each of the twelve brand new tracks specifically honors the evil deities of the netherworld while the un-divine presentation here defines the irreligious identity of the band.
Sect of Vile Divinities further reveals the solid amalgamation of two main compounded elements of guttural growls that are fixed atop the subterranean conduits of the lumbering riffs. The ominous tone of the guitars on “Entrails of the Hag Queen” maintains the effect of the plodding riffs that flawlessly contrast with the sudden tempo changes. The latest craft is characterized by the variations of the tempo changes. There are plenty of doom passages that are remarkably fitted into the music. Incantation‘s musical work combines the crude putrid forms of old school death metal.
The opening of “Guardians from the Primeval” is dark and foreboding brought by the focus of the atmospheric guitars. Incantation conjures up horrific visions of dark haunted crypts of the underworld. The album spreads out like a smoldering haze where the riffs and the guttural growls unfurl upon the frenzied tempos of the grinding drums. The album highlight “Black Fathom’s Fire” features many dark moments. The track begins with a heavy drum pounding and guitars chugs. The monolithic structure of the rhythm guitar suddenly transforms into one crushing death/doom tune. Hence, Sect of Vile Divinities is Incantation’s most doomy album to date. The band offers many heavy crushing riffs that resound heavily throughout the album. On other tracks such as “Ignis Fatuus” the riffs here are subtle and sophisticatedly condensed and exude pure evil. With this profound compound Incantation gauge sophistication and brutality with a terrifying sensibility.
In seemingly way the songs ooze slowly and drip with dark melodies then suddenly it builds up by the massive heavy chugs and pummeling percussion. “Chant of Formless Dread” and “Shadow-Blade Masters of Tempest and Maelstrom” are sinisterly stemmed by churning riffs the songs shift to channel the signature tempo paces which the band has become known for. The twelfth studio album is crammed with the heavy magnitude of classic old school death/doom metal. “Scribes of the Stygian” will leave you all dazed and awed by the slow lumbering riffs, each moment of this track the music crawls out of the cobwebbed ancient crypts of hell. While “Fury’s Manifesto” unleashes a massive reverb, the down-tuned crushing guitars and the guttural growls shape an unholy cacophony.
Album closure “Siege Hive” is more of a straightforward track. In the sense of this excellent musicianship, the sound production of the album is incredible and it’s equally superb to the band’s previous releases. Sect of Vile Divinities gradually crushes and overwhelms the listener. Each track is textured with deep growls, as for the riffs they keep the tone morbid and eerie. To slither and crawl between the slow brooding segments of death/doom metal. Even in our contemporary age Incantation still stands tall and shapeless as an aural demonic church of cavernous death metal.
Release Date: August 21, 2020
Label: Relapse Records
- Ritual Impurity (Seven of the Sky Is One)
- Entrails of the Hag Queen
- Guardians for the Primeval
- Black Fathom’s Fire
- Ignis Fatuus
- Chant of Formless Dread
- Shadow-Blade Masters of Tempest and Maelstrom
- Scribes of the Stygian
- Unborn Ambrosia
- Fury’s Manifesto
- Siege Hive