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CRYPT DAGGER - From Below

Release date March 27/20 (Dying Victims)

Man, this mini-album from Germany's Crypt Dagger takes me back to the old days of imbibing Celtic Frost's immortal Morbid Tales as a new release. Not just because there are some shared traits (more on that later), but also because of it being one of those releases that pulls you in with its old-school charms and refuses to let go throughout its eight track and twenty-four minutes. Dare you not to hit repeat after listening to this if you're one of those who wallow in murky, timeless extreme metal.

The content of the From Below mini-album is made up of the Tales of Torment four-track EP issued in 2019, along with three newbies and one cover (of Dead Moon's "5440 or Fight"). The core sound here is undoubtedly early-era Celtic Frost with a speed metal twist, but there's lots more on offer too. First off, the production on this thing is amazing. Every instrument is in-your-face, the chief benefactor being bass guitar fans, as the blubbering four-string performance often acts as the album's catalyst here. There's also some punk'n'roll undertones throughout, adding to the overall fun ... hell, they even throw in a surf metal riff at one point.

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the vocals of Poser Disposer (ha!) who delves in the same guttural mirth of one Tomas G. Warrior, but adds in the intermittent yelp, sounding like the screams of a little school girl thrown from atop a building. Let's just say that it equates to a memorable performance.

Old school heaven here. Hail!

(8.5)

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