No-one could ever say that Greece isn’t good for black metal as well as history and holidays, amongst other things. Nigredo, as you will gather, fit this bill, and are now following up their 2015 EP “Facets of Death” with this, their debut album.

While forceful and urgent, I have to say that I found that the opening track “Ten Repellent Antiforces” was underpowered. Maybe this was a production decision. I did like its creepy undercurrent. The music has a raw thrashiness about it. Vocally, I was reminded of Dark Fortress, an impression for the whole album. In fact my initial impressions of listening to a fiery, aggressive thrash-black metal panzer assault were maintained throughout. “Choronzon Possession” swings into old school nastiness. The vocalist screams “Chaos”, but that doesn’t really make an album. The industrial-soundings distortions which follow are more interesting but reverting to growly brutality. It’s cold and merciless but it was leaving me cold. I was struggling to find depth.

The fast and furious “Mental Glimpses at Cosmic Horrors” stirs up the juices and exudes malevolence. There’s no time to take breath. Whew. The old school under-produced rawness has now given way to a fuller sound. I much prefer it. The breakneck assault remains the same. Here and there Nigredo slow it down, as if a guillotine is hanging over our neck but it would seem that the principal raison d’être behind these tracks is to ram harsh violence down our throats. It’s the same for the last few tracks – plenty of energy and violence, but I couldn’t say it’s ground-breaking.

Undoubtedly there is evil intent, but the acid test for me is whether I am moved psychologically or it’s just a listening experience. I applaud the intensity but unlike other black metal albums, “Flesh Torn – Spirit Pierced” didn’t crawl around inside me.

(6.5/10 Andrew Doherty)