This is a split between two death metal bands from the Netherlands, Grim Fate and The Sombre.
Grim Fate get the ball rolling with three songs that last 23 minutes in total.
Grim Fate’s death metal is dark and doomy, taking influence from Incantation‘s grim heaviness and Bolt Thrower’s unstoppable warmongering.
The music is mostly slow and crushing, (but not exclusively), with guitars that demolish, sinister melodies, and monstrous expressive vocals that sound like they’re going to eat you. The band have a way with riffs, even the slower ones. I find these songs quite compelling due to that alone, despite the fact the all of the various components are of equally good quality.
Corpse Eater is moody and destructive, and introduces the split with an assured rumbling grace. Grim Fate shine bleakly on this track. Smoarige Fine is the longest track here at 11 minutes in length, and spends its time crafting a doomscape of riffs that mangle and flatten. The song’s gloomy atmosphere is well-realised. From Ancient Slumber ends this side of the split by dealing out a hefty dose of menacing brutality.
The Sombre is a solo act, (Gnaw Their Tongues, Dodenbezweerder), and delivers three songs with a total duration of 19 minutes.
These songs are old-school death/doom hymns, inspired by the early Peaceville masters of the style.
The music is layered with darkness and awash with macabre melody. Forlorn and bleak, they march forward with funereal presence and the patience of the dead. The vocals are so deep and dark you feel as if you could fall into them.
Above th’ Aonian Mount is very atmospheric, especially when the keyboards are used. The song feels ancient, as if recently unearthed from somewhere deep in the underworld. His Pride Had Cast Him out from Heav’n offers a textured, doom-laden atmospheric vista for listeners to explore. Closer The Horrid Silence Thus Began makes very good use of violin, as well as the more aggressive side of the style, to produce a thoroughly engaging end to this split release that combines beauty and beast very effectively.
This is a very strong split. If you’re partial to a bit of doom-infused death, (or death-infused doom), then here’s 43 minutes you shouldn’t miss out on.
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