By today’s standard, hearing of any Extreme Metal band being in some way influenced by the works of H. P. Lovecraft is about as surprising the influence of Satan, or of hearing a Black Metal band might be a bit racist. Roll up the enigmatic, worshippers of the darkened literature, Order Of The Nameless Ones who finally rise once again after a four-year wait since their debut EP release, with their full length debut Utter To Me The Word Of Wrath (Iron Bonehead).
Steeped in a mystique, bolstered by their long absence, their sound is a cacophony of seeping darkness and an unbridled rage. The harsh production values to this brand of Death Metal further heightens that sense of foreboding and its challenging nature, which also somewhat hides the fact that this is an otherwise more straight forward, Old School branch of Death Metal than first impressions may give.
Album opener ‘Aura of Malignancy’ does without easing in the listener by inciting a blast-beat barrage from the off, alongside an unexpected sense of groove akin to the early greats. It is this approach that continues throughout the album, with occasional but unsurprising drops in pace from full throttle to a more brooding pace, without the need for purely atmospheric and pace-breaking interludes or passages. Far from being overly esoteric as the name might have suggested, this is pretty fun and sharp, albeit darkened, take on Death Metal which, at approximately the half hour mark, doesn’t last long enough to overstay its welcome either.
The influence of Lovecraft has, as previously mentioned, sparked a plethora of artists inspired by his works, and often they embrace the subject matter with a manner of near impenetrable or mesmerizingly complex arrangements, which makes it all the more surprising as to how primal and instantly gratifying Utter… is from the off. In such a strong calibre year for the genre, Utter…is still a very well-crafted and highly recommend slab of Death Metal of its near purest.
7 / 10