Formed from the ashes of Blood Stained Dusk, Wormreich is a band that revels in complex and chaotic arrangements. Their brand of Black Metal is heavily influenced by the likes of Deathspell Omega (they even do a cover of “Malign Paradigm” on this album), but with a few twists and turns thrown in to make things interesting. While I knew that they were heavily influenced by Deathspell Omega prior to ever hearing them, I was surprised by how little this band sounds like Blood Stained Dusk. Even when a group changes styles, there’s usually some remnant of their old sound left. That said, there’s very little Blood Stained Dusk remaining in Wormreich’s music now, though it’s debatable whether the band suffers because of it or not. It comes out the most in the keyboard based tracks which serve to break things up enough for you to appreciate all of the technical stuff the band is playing. For those who haven’t heard Wormreich before (and, for that matter, never heard Deathspell Omega either), the music is very hard to describe. It isn’t hyper-technical in the same way that Technical Death Metal and Progressive Metal are. It doesn’t sound like someone is wanking off with their chosen instrument or intentionally making long and meandering music that revels in obscure picking techniques or oddball musical structures. Wormreich, for the most part, sounds like a maelstrom of dissonant riffs that blend together to form a caustic and twisted whole that feels as though it’s ready to fly apart at any second. There’s a lot going on, to say the least. Songs like “Revelation III: Devotion’s Final War” are so multi-layered that just digging through the riffs to figure out what they’re playing is akin to deciphering a cryptogram. The production helps this record a lot, adding a level of clarity that makes the nuances and depth of Wormcult Revelations more apparent. If this had a muddier sound or rawer production, the whole thing would have degenerated into a generic ball of sound that might have worked (Black/Grind bands tend to revel in this sound), but you would have lost a lot. Listening to this album multiple times made me wonder if these guys can actually play this stuff live. I’d pay to see it, and even if it doesn’t live up to what’s on this LP, I’d probably still be plenty satisfied. Even though I’m generally not a fan of overly complicated music, this one kept my interest throughout its 37 minute playing time and I definitely recommend checking it out.
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