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CRAFT - White Noise and Black Metal

Release date June 22/18 (Season Of Mist)

Swedish black metallers Craft have been on my radar since their 2000 debut Total Soul Rape. Having imbibed their second wave-inspired hatred over the last eighteen years (only missing the 2011 Void full length), it has been a nihilistic journey to be sure. The most obvious change over time is in the production quality, the debut being a raw example of the form, progressing along the way to the much cleaner sound of this newest release (their fifth full length).

That doesn't mean that the inspired levels of angst and hatred have diminished over the decades. Far from it. Craft still spew out the nefarious goods, mixing up-and-mid-tempo blackness with guttural vocals, creating an overall sound akin to early Darkthrone. These veterans differentiate their sound though through some unique lead guitar work that plays over top of the relatively standard rhythm section. At times discordant, punishing or almost experimental, it is the guitar work that sets them apart from the black masses. Lend an ear to 'Undone' for a good example of the axe work in question.

White Noise and Black Metal takes the listener on a journey through pummeling, contemplative and triumphant realms, providing yet another bold outing in the year of black metal (anno 2018).

[7.5]

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