Forged in 2014, this impressive Italian Heavy/Doom Metal band unleash their second album through Supreme Chaos and continue to build on their impressive debut. To elaborate on that Heavy/Doom Metal tag, we’re talking Spiritual Beggars/Mushroom River Band/The Quill type territory, with a full, meaty sound – possibly down to the guitarist, bassist and drummer all once being part of Death Metal band Natron (with the addition of Twilight Gate vocalist Stefano Fiore), or possibly merely just down to the songs being so utterly heavy and powerful!
Cos these guys really know how to kick ass! Right from the start we are bombarded with three tracks of well delivered up-tempo doom-laden pounding Metal in a row, set on their way by the excellent impactful opener ‘Walk Into Sepulchral Haze’ – a track that the aforementioned Spiritual Beggars would have been proud of at any time in their career! The vocals are gravel-throated for heaviness but also cleaner when needed, and always plentifully intense. Classic Doom Metal takes the lead on the title track where the band slow it down to welcome in touches of Candlemass and Solitude Aeturnus (the vocals are actually perfectly pitched midway between Messiah Marcolin and Robert Lowe) charged with a Grand Magus style epic delivery.
The tempo picks up again straight afterwards and personally, of course I must note that ‘Eternal Pyre’ has some subtle, intricate cowbell in the driving percussion (yes, I spotted it again regular readers…no it’s not an obsession…), with the band then skipping effortlessly between the groove of ‘Sleep Demon’ and the sheer dynamic power of ‘Under The Spell’, both of which remind me more than favourably of underrated metallers Terra Firma.
The guitar-work shines throughout – the riffs are fabulous enough, but when needed to step expertly to the fore with lead-work on tracks like ‘Belphegor’ or ‘Maze Of No Return’ for instance (if I really must specifically pick any out) it’s done with finesse and conviction, making the picture totally complete. The bass and drums notably and emphatically fill any gaps in the audio onslaught when this happens to insure the band’s live sound is just as huge. Closing track ‘Shadow Of The Plague’, weighing in at just under 8 minutes, manages to incorporate almost all the styles that have gone before, mixed confidently and effortlessly into one song, with even more EPIC spooned on top. A great finish to a great album! Fans of Spiritual Beggars, Terra Firma, The Quill, The Sword and so many others of a similar ilk take note – The Ossuary are a band you really need to hear!
(8.5/10 Andy Barker)