Pale Spektre is a new German Black/Death Metal band that seemingly came out of nowhere. Though the four musicians behind the band do have some experience in a few other bands, none of them did ring a bell to me. But the overall quality of this album definitely leads us to believe that we’re not dealing with just any amateurs here. Amor Fati Productions and Nuclear War Now! Productions must have shared that same thought, because they signed up for the debut that was unleashed on humanity.
‘Bereft Of Xerotic Layers’ was indeed unleashed upon us ignorant souls. It was not introduced by a demo or by any other means, immediately a full-length album. Right into the deep end, no mercy. In fact, the music delivered on this first piece is one that, as an unsuspecting listener, you could use some grace. The band makes no bones about it and goes full steam ahead. Their musical direction initially seems a bit schizophrenic, but in the end it works very well. Musical influences are pulled from every nook and cranny, as long as it is loud, extreme and extremely merciless. It is an unpleasant mix between Black Metal and Death Metal in which bits of Drone, Extreme Doom and Ambient are also woven into a … pleasant mix. Thus, we hear pieces that are (could be) inspired by bands like Black Funeral, Leviathan, Beherit and Incantation. An ultimate dark fusion of intoxicating fever dreams and demonic deliria. Not all too far removed from those bands like Ævangelist. It might, perhaps, best be described as an updated and more blackened version of the ‘War Metal’-genre.
That ‘Bereft Of Xerotic Layers’ is not quite for the faint of heart, should be obvious. Their way of drowning you in their violent vortex of hellish and tormented shrieks, thunderous drums and utterly wild Death Metal oriented riffs surely demands something from the listener. A certain acquired taste maybe, but at least some stamina and perseverance. Or, and that would be the best option, you must enjoy being treated to torture in audio form. Definitely recommended!