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Unaussprechlichen Kulten – Häxan Sabaoth

unaussprechlichen kulten – häxan sabaoth


To say Chile has been one of the most important countries when it comes to releasing extreme metal falls short, which is that one of the Southern cone nations has been churning out some of the best modern Death Metal. One of the best examples of this has been Unaussprechlichen Kulten, a long-standing band with over 25 years of activity and 6 albums under their belt. Like many of their South American brethren, they have been dedicated in producing some of the most gut churning, odious Death Metal imaginable – something which they continue with their latest opus, ‘Häxan Sabaoth’.

For those unfamiliar with Unaussprechlichen Kulten, the occult reference of the name is itself an indication of the sort of putrid Death Metal we can see here. Some bands prefer to take a stripped-down approach to their music, but not this act. Unaussprechlichen Kulten opt to forge complex, layered Death Metal through a combination of influences – they take much of the angular and multifaceted riffing approach of early Immolation and Morbid Angel, apply the infamous reverb of Incantation and eerie tremolo picked melodies compounded by a fierce and apocalyptic double bass drumming. All these singular facets help craft an album that is dense and rich in subtle details, all the while conjuring some of the most nightmarish visions of other universes inhabited by mind-altering deities.

Unaussprechlichen Kulten have had many years to hone in on their craft and it shows through the meticulous compositions of their songs. Many songs go from passages of burst-fire frantic blastbeats, pulverizing the listener to bits to sudden bursts of melody that completely throw you off. Even here, the melodies are not comforting or saccharine as they can be in other musical contexts – but rather carry a sense of dissonance and dread that emphasize the hellish environment the band serve, almost feeling like being in the middle of a sulfur pit. The solo work here is phenomenal, displaying both technical ability and cohesion within the overall musical narrative. We even have sprinkles of organs and choral arrangements to hold it altogether. Another factor the band has been mastering over the course of time has been gradually increasing the length of songs, going for more ambitious and elaborate songwriting. This was already being reflected in their past album ‘Teufelsbücher’ but feels consolidated here as no track drops below the 5-minute mark. Special mention must be made to the colossal 8 minute closer ‘Die Teufelsbücher which brings everything I’ve just said together into an epic infernal finale.

It’s difficult for a band to continue to uphold the quality of their work 6 albums into their career, but Unaussprechlichen Kulten are just that exact type of band. This album is exhausting in a good way, not because it drags or because it’s boring, but rather because it completely demands your attention during every second of its duration. The Chilean trio have carefully studied their influences to create something which is not for the faint of heart. For those who want a Death Metal record that goes above and beyond the regular conventions of the genre, this is a must have and a very strong record to start off 2024.

Iron Bonehead Productions

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