Blodskam are brothers from Sweden and their musical roots date back to 1998 when they conceived their black metal beast. The duo didn’t release anything bearing the Blodskam moniker until recently when Aghora and Dodfodd entered the studio and enlisted the talents of Filppu from Convivium to beat the drums.

La-Bas is a six track psychotic venture and is raw and vitriolic in its genetics. The opener, Bodel, is slow and moody with chants intertwining the spine of the animal. The track verges on having a doomy undercurrent with sprinklings of inflamed, angry vocals. A little removed from the traditional black metal recipe some might say.

Thankfully, the band picks up the pace for the majority of the rest of the album, full of immorality and malevolence. The release spans a wide spectrum, and showcases fast riffing with demonic drums to back it up, to slow menacing fragments, all entwined with caustic and hateful vocals.

The album almost feels confused, as if it’s not sure of what path to take. Whether it is raw, satanic and rapid metal or more doom laden, dawdling and gradual depressive beats. They show glimpses of being masters of each style, they just need to decide on a route to take and pour their soul into that mould in order to create a truly magnificent monster. Sadly, until that phoenix rises from the ashes, this is just way too chaotic for my palate.

(6/10 Phil Pountney)