There are no easy angles into the impossibly crossed streams of bestial black metal, primitive death metal, and blackened thrash metal as the seemingly impenetrable will of the raw-thrashing purist suffers no adulteration in their choice diabolical summoning. There are few ‘scenes’ or fandom as true and persistent across the last three or so decades from Sarcófago and Sabbat up to Anal Vomit and Vomitor those barriers between the bestial and the inhumanely thrashing are busted and stained with the neon blood of their followers. Santiago, Chile based blackened death/thrashers Perversor crawled up from a their molten pits just over a decade now and have wrought a path that proves more insistent with every step. The barbarism of their debut full-length ‘Cult of Destruction’ (2008) put the band on the bestial black metal map but it’d be the addition of bassist Morbest (Eaten Alive, Evil Madness) in 2009 that set Perversor on the road to intensifying their sound with death/thrash metal influences. They’d found their signature blackened death/thrash style on ‘Anticosmocrator’ (2015) but that war metallic looseness and a bothersome drum sound kept the band within that Warfare Noise range of bestial metal. With the release of ‘Umbravorous’ it is clear that Perversor are aiming for the upper echelon of death/thrashing war metal and finding an incomparable intensity as they achieve it.
A few deathly steps beyond the inspiring work of acts like Invocation Spells or Impiety, ‘Umbravorous’ takes the machine-gunfire of ‘I.N.R.I.’ and sets it to peak late 80’s death/thrash intensity with a nigh perfect production sound. That dry-rotted mix rightly compliments an unexpected bout of precision and intensity on a level entirely new to the bands discography. As such ‘Umbravorous’ should quickly warrant comparisons to Insanity‘s classic ‘Death After Death’ and this with a gymnastic and violent style of riffing to match (see: “Formidible Destinio”, “The Dwell”). What all comes ripping from the speakers arrives with a snarl to rival that of Nifelheim‘s debut compressed within classic death metals cavernous focus. Not only do they bring their most decayed sound on this third album but Perversor arrives with a fanatical string of riffs that inspires front to back.
‘Umbravorous’ is undoubtedly a work that will appeal to the ‘old school’ extreme metal guitarist, the type of fellow who’d worship the wailing and tightly wound successes of Mortem (Peru) just as much as those of classic Sadus, Merciless and the black-thrashers that would form beyond that rapacious sound. It is yet one step closer to ‘brutal’ thrash of the late 80’s than it is the Teuton-fed black/thrash that persists across Chile (the world for that matter) today and in this sense Perversor stand out a great deal. With one foot in the sensibilities of bestial blackened thrash and another in the classic death/thrash realm they represent the best of both netherworlds on ‘Umbravorous’. It took some time to wrap my head around just how solid this record is largely because it doesn’t utilize gimmickry to get the blood flowing; Riffs are occasionally repetitive but they are never needlessly placed and the whole of ‘Umbravorous’ length offers very few points of respite, instead we’re given pockets of unexpected death metal ruination to allow breaths between jangling lightning-sped riff attacks. “Somnambulus” and “D.M.T.” not only reinforce the earlier Insanity comparison but give the sense that this isn’t a mindless trek down a featureless corridor of riff. That is ultimately the ‘pitch’ for the experience, that beyond the potent forcible nature of the performances lies a calculated mind with an impressive taste in rhythm guitar runs and violent riffs.
I’d probably ripped through this record about ten times before I had a thought beyond “Wow, that sounded like ‘Death After Death’…” and that was more or less all of the thinking I need to do when encountering this type of music. The appeal comes from its vigorous speed and the channel that the brutal blackened death/thrash attack carves into the mind as it seems like one great intense moment that won’t end. ‘Umbravorous’ is class in the sense that it maintains a simple and effective spectacle upon successive listens; Great album art, tons of riffs, pure evil thrash style, and they duck out right at the 33 minute mark. This is the type of record I have to own and end up coveting because it holds up as a piece of art and a diabolical hard-assed heavy metal riff album. Highly recommended. For preview jump right to “Formidible Destinio” and then “D.M.T.” for the tracks that really have me hyped months later and make sure you don’t skip “Somnambulus” in any case.
Purified through death’s triumph. 4.0/5.0
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