Released date: March 17th, 2016
Genre: Black/Death Metal
Label: Auto de Fe Prods
A perfect blending of corrosive sound and clandestine atmosphere is what one would find in this debut full-length offering by the German-based black/death metal trio, Lihhamon. I haven’t really heard of this band until this month, when my friend from The Pit of the Damned sent me their debut release “Doctrine“. After receiving the band’s material I gave it a spin without further ado, and for the whole 30 minutes of listening to the album I was blasted with a vicious hammering drum work and nasty ball-breaking brutal riffs with some of the most darkest aura in the background.
“Doctrine” has got all of the elements needed in a fine album under the genre of spliced black and death metal music. Great vocals that commands a malicious order of slaughter to send millions into their violent deaths, vicious guitar riffs which will pound the listeners’ faces in with every power chord and open tremolo pickings, and an outstanding drummer who plays fast as hell but has some great chops to go along with the slow parts of the record.
The vocals found here were clearly given some great reverb at points to just hover off over the ballistic undercurrent, and though the band’s front man doesn’t have a divine distinct style on his delivery, his performance here is perfectly utilitarian and a disturbing peer to any other vocalists under the genre. As for the guitars, its powerful tone has given it the dominance to surge forward in an ominous and highly threatening manner. The riffing is splendid and catchy, and the guitar’s tonality is very clear. It even pinches off a number of percussive squeals through the monstrous miasma, and integrated them seamlessly into the overall riffing structure.
Then the audiences are satisfied with frenzied beating drum work that seem to balance on the boundary between control and mayhem. The left and right drum blasting of the drummer are awed with igniting speed, while his anarchic fills and conventional skill will guarantee the listeners that they will not be send to sleep. The bass however, though audible in some part, isn’t nearly as intense and interesting as the guitar and drum work supplied in the offering. Nonetheless, it accomplished its job in generating a bulky resonance so that the songs doesn’t sound like some ice-thin shitty black metal tunes.
And perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the offering is the majestically dark and deep ambiance behind the background. Lihhamon might hit hard like a hammer in the thrashing and brisk parts of the record, but when it’s time to slowing the tempo down they can also cut like a knife and slice up some of that very cold vibe in the mix.
All of those great elements mentioned above, of course, would be enshrouded and could not be heard without an appropriate production. The production here is great and perfect for this kind of music. Lihhamon knew what they wanted to play and how they wanted it to sound, so everything is all but quintessential in this album.
With everything stated above, “Doctrine” is a record that I highly recommend fans of both death metal and black metal should purchase. It’s mandatory to anyone out there in the metal realm who is a connoisseur of gut-wrenching music with an appetite for enigmatic atmosphere. There is no excuse not to own this killer slab of extreme music magnum opus.
Originally written for www.thepitofthedamned.com