Forged by Satan’s Doctrine
Colombian black/death metal horde King this year releases their debut full length album, Forged by Satan’s Doctrine under famed extreme metal label, Deathgasm Records. Deathgasm Records in recent years have released quite a large number of personally enjoyable records, and having Forged by Satan’s Doctrine released under the label certainly bodes well, but it undoubtedly leaves a certain level of expectation on the band as well.
Forged by Satan’s Doctrine opens with chants and traditional/ethnic percussions at the background with Summon Shub-Niggurath Ye Black, leaving a dark and haunting air while sending a chill down the listener’s spine at the same time. The spoken words littered at random also tests the listener’s sanity, sounding like crazed whispers to the listener’s ears. No Pray No Mercy Just Death (Unpromised Satan) then bludgeons the listener unexpectedly, with the band unleashing all their fury in full force and the listener is thrown into a myriad of blackened death riffs, tinged with the speed and aggression of thrash metal. The music from here on is a whole mixbag of different genres, ranging from technical death metal to grindcore. The tech-death influence is clearly audible throughout, especially with the quirky basslines that Raken utilises at the background, providing a unique sound to the music, though at times these tend to be overdone and end up sounding pretty awkward. The heavy emphasis on the bass in the music from the start instantly reminds listeners of bands like Defiled with the complex bass riffs and the lead-style of playing.
The vocals department is also another interesting aspect of the album, ranging from high-pitched, black metal-styled shrieks to brutal death metal-styled guttural growls, which are at times punctuated with grindcore-influenced gurgling vocals. This is topped by the relentless battery by drummer Baleck and the razor sharp guitar tones of axe-wielding duo Israel and Zarthan, unleashing punishing riff after punishing riff, leaving listeners with little time and space to breathe. Moments such as the complex riff patterns on songs like Evil Evangelization also remind listeners of influential tech/brutal death metal bands such as Demilich, and the blackened death metal sound of Satan’s Fabrica gives a slight resemblance to Polish overlords, Behemoth. The overtly anti-Christian song titles and lyrics while at times come across as overly cheesy can be entertaining as well, especially with song titles like Kill the Posers like Fucking Christians.
The album also includes 2 songs from the band’s 2006 EP, Nonlaughter – Zero Fucking Happiness as bonus tracks, the title track and What’s Satan Domain. The inclusion of these 2 tracks are certainly good markers of the growth that the band has experienced through the years, especially since these happened to be 2 of the weakest tracks on the album. For example, the mechanical style of drumming on these tracks makes it sound almost as if they were played by programmed drums. What’s Satan Domain is pretty interesting though, with the overall chilling effect that the band has managed to conjure though at 8 minutes, the song tends to get draggy towards the middle. Overall, while Forged by Satan’s Doctrine has been an interesting album, there are times when things get slightly overdone, affecting the flow and enjoyment of the music, though the band’s attempts to be innovative are certainly commendable.