Black Burn – “The Invocation”

Black Burn – “The Invocation” (High Roller Records)

Wow, talk about a blast from the past – this one goes all the way back to 1985! Not only that but it covers the little if known scene in Berlin, which was still part of the Eastern Bloc so unsurprising then that heavy metal was outlawed!! Black Burn was pioneered by one of the few Berlin metallers, Jörg Franke, and is best described as proto death metal given it mixes intense speed metal courtesy of Carsten Köhler’s wild guitar work with Marcel Klinger’s guttural growls (reputedly slated by Helloween who were using the same studio LOL). In many ways, Black Burn remind me of Carnivore who did a similar fusion with punk and metal, so in many ways the material is similar being raw, experimental and often like a jamming session. Still, it’s remarkable how many of the sounds of Black Burn’s songs like ‘The World Is An Immeasurable War’, ‘Dr Vollin’ and ‘Necrophile’ can be heard in today’s bands – indeed, Franke states that he handed a demo containing ‘Necrophile’ to none other than Kerry King when Slayer played Berlin in ’85, only for ‘Necrophobic’ to arise in ’86 with apparently similar lyrics – who knows! “The Invocation” is a worthy effort from a historical viewpoint in that it gives some recognition to an otherwise forgotten scene, however, I don’t believe these demo tracks are likely to cause a musical Glasnost simply owing to the fact that today’s metal genres have distinct sounds which die hard fans religiously expect bands to adhere to. Then again – who knows!

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