Mini reviews: Bongripper/Hate, Rorcal, Atheos

Bongripper / Hate split

While Bongripper are on tour with Conan, they’ve put out a split 12” together to celebrate the pairing but let’s not forget the other recently released split they did with Hate. For the uninitiated, this pairing brings two extremes together.

Bongripper’s smoky, high times instrumental doom has always been an interesting prospect, conjuring vast sonic landscapes that are easy to lose yourself in with massive Sleep-esque riffs. Meanwhile, fellow Chicagoans Hate’s side is unbridled reckless grinding hardcore, perpetrated with a total disregard for the listener hoping to take a breather and soak it in. So while Bongripper’s sole offering to this split, ‘Fisting’, is a hazy miasma of trudging riffs that only gathers in pace from time to time, Hate serve up a searing barrage to complement it perfectly – a split highly recommended.

Rorcal – Világvége

Switzerland’s Rorcal aren’t as well-known as they should be but given their country of origin and the (presumably) small scenes within it, it isn’t surprising to know that there are certain levels of interplay between Rorcal’s members and those of Impure Wilhelmina, Knut, and Vuyvr. Rorcal though have been slogging it out for years, shifting from moments of chaotic sludgy post metal to simply crushing doom, like 2010’s Heliogabalus, a 70 minute foray into the doom abyss.

Világvége is a whole other breed of dirge with the band upping the tempo, akin to their older material and adding the flavours of black metal for good measure. The band maintain their own identity strongly here but there’s a whiff of Hexis picked up as well but the strains of eerie melody always keep this unholy barrage interesting.

Atheos – The Human Burden

After various delays, Mullingar’s Atheos have released their first full-length The Human Burden. The technical death metal band has made us wait but it’s a wait well worth it, as this is surely to be a highlight for Irish metal come year’s end, and that’s definitely saying something in a year that sees new albums from Altar of Plagues and Slidhr. 

Atheos occupy a vein of death metal, with sleek production and top class musical chops that while impressive, is oversaturated, which is why it’s so refreshing to hear a band attempt to changes things up a little. Atheos definitely appear to have the bit between their teeth with this one. There’s grandeur and bludgeoning in each of these seven songs, striking a perfect balance between the two – a definite diamond in the rough.

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