“Poisoned Atonement”

By Dr. Abner Mality

When it’s time to paint bloody pentagrams on the outhouse walls, Italy’s Demonomancy would be a fitting accompaniment. Not to be confused with the American band of the same name, these diabolical dagos unleash a torrential flood of oldschool devil metal in the vein of Sodom, Possessed, Krisiun and other such venerable names.

I was not expecting much from this but was very pleasantly surprised. It’s not the formless, monotonous “chaos metal” I feared. The songs are punchy, riffy and perversely catchy…there are hooks amidst the mayhem! Second track “Archaic Remnants of the Numinous” in fact is one of the best blasts of demonic metal I’ve clapped goat ears on this year. It’s very much a combo of “Seven Churches” Possessed with the fiery blast of old South American bands like Vulcano and Holocausto. “The Day of the Lord” is almost a death metal singalong…blasphemously catchy!  “The Last Hymns to Eschaton” shows some moodiness and even a touch of progression. The later tracks veer into mid-paced mayhem that still kills.

All the satanic hoo-hah is as comfortable as old sneakers and about as rebellious, but this version of Demonomancy knows how to write powerful black/death tunes that make obeisance to the masters while still delivering withering fire.