Oniricous may not be on everyone’s radars as these Spaniards only have two previous full length albums, ‘Ritos Disbolicos’ (2013) and ‘La Caverna Del Fuego’ (2016), but this new EP may help to propel them into the hearts of many a death metal fan seeking out a new treasure, or just anyone who appreciates art for what it is.
Opening with an ‘Intro’ of just over a minute, compiled of a constant ‘noise’ joined later by an audible thunder storm, this then leads, with a thunder clap, into ‘Exhumando El Horror’ which is where Oniricous open up and exhibit their true intentions. The pace is speedy and a fair degree of technicality is on show. The vocals are guttural, yet crisp and clear in their deliverance (even better if you can speak Spanish). The pace slows momentarily mid track and then they fire back with even more velocity and detail. This is death metal verging on thrash at times, a montage of varying styles which keeps the episode interesting.
‘El Extrano’ begins with a trippy and chugging intro before Chuster announces the track with a deep roar followed by a higher pitched scream. He then continues the vocal duties by spitting them out with true malice and spite. It’s a credit to him how he can show such accomplishment on the vocals yet also contribute so well to the lead guitar along with Mazo, who intertwine to create a melody and harmony any thrasher would be proud of. Al-wars and Tony both show talent on the rhythm guitar and bass respectively, and Tillo certainly puts in a shift on the drums, generating a drum score that is frenzied and hectic, yet measured and restrained throughout.
‘La Cabra Negra’ opens with a sample of general crowd noise and inaudible voices before they expose the track with swigging riffs and a repetitive drum beat. The vocals are slower and more relaxed than previously witnessed, yet these marry to the harmony perfectly, even touching upon gruff at times. A beautiful guitar solo enters the fray at a perfectly timed moment, faultlessly braking up the uniformity yet not overstaying its welcome before the song is back on track, deep into its death roots.
‘La Maldicion’ is all out warfare, pounding and pulsating with every breath. The tempo again is raised and the vocals are vindictive and vicious. Another guitar solo is launched, delicate and precise, a perfect addition to the proceedings and an outstanding accompaniment to the combat going on alongside it. Mid song the pace slows and an interlude of melodic guitars and pristine drum work is exhumed before they propel one last time into battle.
We are then left with the ‘Outro’ of piano work and spoken word, an atmospheric addition to the package and a piece which reaches deep into your soul and leaves you with an air of exhaustion as you really have just survived a mini riot, a rampage on the senses, and one that will have you longing for a repeat over and over again.
Success accomplished ?? Tick !!!
(8/10 Phil Pountney)