Astaroth were one of those bands that sadly never released an album. The band started in 1991 in Tampla, Florida, celebrating a downtuned metal of death with tons of groove and a very dark, obscure vibe similar to Sadistic Intent or some Finnish Death Metal groups.
This compilation by Vic Records includes their demos from 93-98. The band had a lot of musicians during their career, especially the drummers seemed to have been replaced a few times. Beasts like Tony Laureano, James Marcinek, Tomas Viator, Jim Coker, Larry Sapp, Demian Hestel and many more were part of this band. The man behind the mic, Ken Clarck seems to be the consistent one and also a huge plus point of this band. His voice is located somewhere between Wagner Antichrist, Marc Grewe and old Max Cavalera, a powerful and memorable voice that didn`t went for the „lower is better“ kind of thing.
What I really like about Astaroth is their variation in speed and the ability to create a very possessing, gruesome atmosphere, ranging mostly in the mid-tempo field and pushing the acceleration button when needed. The recording qualities are album worthy, and a length of almost an hour makes this compilation more than worth to buy.
The band, let`s call it „traditionally“ for the early nineties, also wrote some instrumentals that give once a quick breath or a cold shiver, depending on the song, which showcases their variety even there. If you search some demo gems then this compilation is mandatory… The Duke from Hell awaits. (DPF)