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HMS Music Spotlight

I’m immediately transported back to the heyday of thrash metal, the very end of the 80’s to be specific, when I listen to Greece’s Bacchanalia (great name btw). The unapologetic ferocity of their sonic delivery is reminiscent to me of Slayer’s material from the latter part of that decade – particularly in their opening, self-titled track.

I also hear a lot of early Holy Moses in the instrumentation. Upon viewing their band camp page I realized that the order of their track listing was shuffled while downloading their album. Never-the-less this did not diminish the impact of their album while I was writing this review.

I really dig the funky opening groove to “My Own Nemesis”, as well as the dynamic riff work towards the midway point of the track. It builds to quite a climax, I only wish the vocals would alter slightly to meet this high point in the song. It’s probably my biggest complaint when listening to Bacchanalia’s music: the vocals are brutal enough in the growls and rumbles, yet they become a little monotonous at times – particularly in “Painter Of The Shadows”. “Rise Again” is a much more effective song, and perhaps so because of it’s more simplified structure. I really, really love the riff in the verses. I’m glad they chose to repeat it when the vocals kick in. It has a vintage Metallica vibe to it.

“Darkest Times” reminds me of how bleak yet powerful material like this can be when a sharp ear for detail presides over the quality of the performance and production. Things speed up in the frantic track “In A Silent Universe”. It offers up some sparing yet stylish effect work on the guitars, giving it a slightly retro-psychedelic feeling. It’s similar to an old White Zombie track but far more brutal.

Written by: Richard Leggatt
7.5 out of 10

“Satyr King” has many little moments of ambience that allow it to stand out in the crowd. However “Suffocated Bastards”, despite the chaotic flurry of riffing that kicks it off, seems to ultimately go nowhere. The deathly track that is “The Traitor”, although somewhat ominous, just doesn’t have the gusto that's present in a majority of their tracks, causing it to fall a little short of their mark of excellence.

Overall Bacchanalia cement themselves as a powerful act in the realm of “extreme” metal, and their sound honors the classic death and thrash heavy hitters who have come before them. I would personally like to hear a little more variation in the vocal department so that they can effectively build up the dynamic peaks in their music on all fronts. Barring this they are an energetic and promising act!

Richard Leggatt, HMS

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