Derais – “Of Angel’s Seed and Devil’s Harvest” (Ván Records)
The debut of this reputedly ‘anonymous’ German funeral doom / black metal band, there are only 4 tracks on show here but they are certainly monstrous epics, clocking in around 20 minutes and definitely not lacking in any small measure of atmosphere!!!! With a deep, heavily strummed bass and smashing drums providing a tombstone heavy back beat, the guitar is raw but with plenty of overdrive making for a wall of noise yet also suavely blending in plenty of dark melodies, some subtle and others more prominent in the more ambient aspects to the material. The multiple vocals really make a difference using a variety of styles from haunting whispers and spoken word to choral chanting and bestial wails – not forgetting demonic screamo! It certainly makes for plenty of atmosphere on the likes of ‘Hellbless’ and ‘White Night’ although this album is unmistakeably one of those that should be listened to from start to finish, and despite the funeral doom foundation, the energy and flow, not to mention occasions of frantic drumming ensure that the last you will do is fall asleep to this creative nightmare!