Saturday, 13 November 2010

[ALBUM REVIEW]Diamatregon - The Satanic Devotion

1. Cerbere
2. Earth Rites
3. The Pilgrim's Song
4. Abode a Rats
5. Helleva Screams
6. Diamatregon
7. Demon Rides the Nuns
8. Satan is My Pride
9. Satan War Spit
10. Satanic Devotion

Usually France is reasonably reliable for black metal, a lot of the albums coming out of the country at the present time are absolutely fantastic. Unfortunately for Diamatregon though, they are certainly not one of the better acts to come out of the Grenoble region, never mind France itself.

First thing's first, it's hard to even tell initially if the band are being altogether serious or not, when you have song titles such as “Demon Rides the Nuns” and “Helleva Screams” which begs the question, 'Are they just bad at English or are they genuinely trying to be humorous?'. In which case if it's the former, I prefer bands to sing in their native language rather than embarrass themselves, and if it were the latter, which I suspect, then they should just give up altogether.

Apparently they have been around for thirteen years or so, and if this is the quality of material they are happy to produce then more power to them. On the basis of this release, I'm just glad my eardrums won't have to experience such sonic torture ever again.

The music itself completely lacks any sort of cohesion or consistency whatsoever. Right from the outset, the very first thing which you cannot in any way fail to notice is the excruciating feedback screech coming through the guitar in every single song. Leaving stuff like this in the final recording is farcical, you wouldn't find a production job as bad on this on ninety percent of any black metal demo out there today never mind for a full length album. It's actually so bad at times it quite literally did hurt my hears and I had to turn the volume down. It's pretty much the way the rest of the release goes as well. The vocals are heavily processed and as a result sound extremely unnatural, the complete lack of bass presence only manages to emphasise this. The drumming sounds like a child randomly beating a biscuit tin, infact I'd even hazard a guess that there are kids out there who could perform better behind the sticks than Antoine. The guitar riffing is the only aspect of this release which is remotely interesting, and on “The Pilgrim's Song” or “Satan is my Pride”, it at least works towards at least some way of making a sitting through the song bearable.

The Satanic Devotion is certainly an album I won't be revisiting again in a hurry, and the same can be said about the band themselves, because on the basis of this, a half-assed attempt at offensive black metal, I'll be glad never to even hear of the band again. Beneath the mind numbingly bad production attempt, the music itself just doesn't cut it, because there is not one iota of any identifying factor or aspect of this release that would set them apart from the hordes of sub-par black metal projects. I am never specifically looking for originality and revolutionary new techniques when exploring new bands, but I do expect the music to at least be able to stand on it's own two feet.

I wouldn't recommend this abomination to anyone, unless you like your black metal sounding exactly like it was recorded in a mishmash five minute session in a toolshed, then avoid. Apparently it's been re-released, but I have to ask myself, how in the name of hell did this manage to shift enough copies to warrant a re-release in the first place?


Originally written for Metalcrypt

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