Cosmic Horrors is a raw and rudimentary 12-minute EP by Nekromanteion. A short blast of Bolivian blackened death, with a brand which doesn’t exactly squeal innovation. But that’s what some bands are for: fleshing out over-saturated genres which are in dire need of more newcomers contributing their feces to the tidal wave of metal excrement. That’s not to say that Nekromanteion is bad, but there is certainly is a lot of crap floating out there and they merely attempt to execute the bog-standard very well. Is it possible that they can rise above the murky deluge like a surfer-dude Nergal?
The short answer? Potentially. There are definite core strengths here, keystones from which growth is possible. I enjoy the fast, primitive aesthetic occupying the core of the music, embellished with ominous bells and disturbing speech to open the two tracks. Given a moment to adjust, it’s also pleasing that they’re not afraid to utilize a few guitar hooks despite the abrasive, aggressive style. “Oath of Black Fire” demonstrates this well, with a tasty riff at 2:30 and a brvtal sledghammering conclusion. However, it’s a sledgehammer with superior craftsmanship, fancy lettering and embossed with obsidian – there is appreciable nuance in the guitar melody in this section. Indeed, the transition at 2:06 in “Demonic Libations” is super nifty and stands out.
The longer answer? Potentially, but not in this current form. My principle criticism of Cosmic Horrors is that there is a dearth of interesting musical ideas beyond a few riffs and transitions. The aforementioned slick moment on “Demonic Libations” repeats more or less identically multiple times within its six minute length. Given this EP is but 12 minutes in length, the lack of imagination is an issue. Additionally, outside of the flagged strong aspects, the material is a little unremarkable. Be good or be bad, but don’t be forgettable. Sincere questions remain over Nekromanteion‘s ability to write 12 memorable minutes, let alone an entire album.
The building blocks are here but these Bolivians will need a few more materials before their concrete becomes a key component in the desecrated tomb that is blackened death metal. Nergal and his kin are buried a little deeper, but Nekromanteion may yet find their way.
DR: 4 | Format Reviewed: 192kbps mp3
Label: Iron Bonehead Productions
Websites: Too kvlt for the interwebs!
Release Dates: Worldwide: 05.19.2015