Although the project was conceived in the mid 90’s as V.E.L.D. it would officially become Veld in 2001 as their technically precise and brutal form of eastern European death metal took shape. Raw, demented, blasphemic and ranting in it’s run-on riffs their debut full-length ‘Infested With Rats Life’ might have been rough-shod but it was certainly an unforgettable release in 2002. Unsatisfied and on the cusp of realizing his modern and brutal vision of death metal, Belarusian guitarist/vocalist Кирилл Бобрик (Kirill Bobrik) restaffed his rhythm section after touring with Sinister and Behemoth and moved towards the blasting, streamlined power of the then wildly popular Polish brutal death metal sound. This is where Veld first made a name for themselves as they reacted with ‘End of All’. Their balance between the blackened technical side of Behemoth and the more twisted musings of groups like Hate and Trauma made for an equally interesting ‘second’ introduction from the band.
Now their third album ‘Love. Anguish. Hate.’ escapes me as I’m not willing to pirate a copy, but after it’s completion and independent release the rhythm section of the band was once again replaced but this time with Polish musicians. Fast forward a full seven years and ‘DAEMONIC: The Art Of Dantalian’ is where I initially encountered Veld‘s music and although it rang of that early 00’s era of brutal death metal you could tell Bobrik‘s approach to composition was slowly incorporating more technical, machinated riff-forms that were appropriately heavy handed. It was perhaps more like a tasteful continuation of where Decapitated were going on ‘The Negation’ before the turn towards accessible groove metal, or I suppose Trauma‘s continuation after ‘Imperfect Like a God’. The huge sound and relentless aggression didn’t end there, though.
‘S.I.N.: Spawned Into Nothingness’ continues off of the bone-shaking momentum of ‘DAEMONIC: The Art Of Dantalian’ with bolder production, cleaner drum sounds, and further exploration of twisted technical death metal riffing. If you’re like me and you really followed every brutal death release from Poland during the rise of bands like Vader, Behemoth and Nile the style of drumming and relentless attack will feel comfortable. For my taste the love for Behemoth starts to seriously die around ‘The Apostasy’ and thankfully Veld‘s focus stops just short of it’s cruelty and takes more care with variation. Many other bands still continue on in this style and perhaps the ones I think are comparable in quality would be Azarath and Trauma especially the most recent full-lengths from each. The production might be oppressive initially but the high speed, technicality and flow of Veld‘s style at least avoids the brain-dead feeling of a lot of modern brutal death.
Blasphemy, nihilism and hatred-spawned poetry set to the otherworldly brutality of eastern European death metal is still an appealing force in my mind but I am severely picky about it. After almost twenty years of headaches from funny production jobs, tin-can drumming, and frightening groove metal operas I can tell immediately if an album’s sound is going to hurt. ‘S.I.N.’ is a loud-shouted migraine in this respect with it’s appropriately urgent, machinated performances. This isn’t so much a complaint but a warning that throughout it’s 45 minute length it doesn’t relent, or pander to current atmospheric trends, for even a moment (well alright, two minutes on “Awakening”). The strongest parts of ‘S.I.N.’ are actually it’s black metal and even slightly industrial influenced moments (“Hatred Forever Dispersed”) where the drummer and vocalist take a breath while new sounds are introduced. For this reason the second half of the album was somewhat easier to engage with after the non-stop bash of the first half.
Maybe I’m turning into more of an old wimp every year but I had trouble re-listening to this latest Veld album on repeat and found I needed a break and palate cleanser after each listen. A good part of my interest in this album comes from nostalgia for my discovery of Polish death metal and albums like ‘Satanica’ but also seeing where Veld will go beyond the revival of ‘DAEMONIC: The Art Of Dantalian’. So far it is a similar album, perhaps more intense and focused, that is a good sign of stability to come for a band that seemed to change staff with each release. The only thing I’d like to see incorporated as the band moves forward is some of the strong soloing from Bobrik‘s instrumental tech-metal project Killry, where I don’t love the riffs on ‘Seeds of Chaos’ those types of solos might fit quite well with the twisted/blackened riffs of Veld. I’m glad this band has a good deal going and will be interesting to see what they do across the span of three records.
For preview the strongest riffs came from “We Will Forever Be”, “Grand Day of Demise” and I liked how they shook things up in the middle of “Hatred Forever Dispersed”. Recommended for folks who have some nostalgia for middle-period Behemoth, Trauma, and Hate but still want the Azarath quality riffing. If you don’t love Polish style death metal I’d at least suggest it because it doesn’t have a lot of the odd production issues of many of the classics in the style while still retaining the attack and spirit of the style.
|Released||June, 15 2018|
|BUY/LISTEN on Listenable Records’ Bandcamp!||Follow Veld on Facbeook|
Utter destruction of light. 3.5/5.0
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