By Dr. Abner Mality

“The death metal album IMMORTAL will never record! The black metal album INCANTATION should have recorded!”

So brays the PR sheet for Pact, putting huge pressure on the band right from the start. The verdict? “Enigmata” is one sick puppie, churning forth a genuinely sick and ill sounding combo of death and black metal foulness. However, nobody could really live up to that overhyped claim. Best to just listen to this on its own terms, as a nasty blast of extreme metal.

A lot of kudos should go to the nameless vocalist here, who has a sick grinding tone to his growls that adds to the unhealthy aura of Pact’s music. He is the right man for the job. There’s also something twisted and distorted to the band’s riffing that gives you that creepy feeling. Old Belphegor comes to mind more than once. There’s also structure and method to the madness that denotes well crafted chaos. “Edict of Anu” and “Collider” stand out as two of the better examples of this. They also inject a suitably gloomy melody to “Sorrow’s Embrace” while the album ending “Of Erebus” starts with oddly hypnotic “reverse” guitar chords before exploding into a whirlwind.

There are a couple of filler tracks shoved in here, but the genuinely evil atmosphere that hovers over “Enigmata” ensures that this record is of interest to true connoisseurs of blasphemous metal.