THANTIFAXATH "Sacred White Noise"

WORMREICH "Wormcult Revelations"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Never thought I would say it, but North America really does seem to be the place for exciting new black metal. Scandinavia just isn't producing that much gripping new stuff. But deep within the darkened corners of our own continent, many dark and evil things are a'bubbling. Things such as Wormreich and Thantifaxath.

With a name like Wormreich and an album titled "Wormcult Revelations", I was predisposed to like these guys anyways. Thankfully I don't need to feel guilty about it, because "Wormcult Revelations" is a worthy effort no matter what it's name is. This band is related to Blood Stained Dusk, a name of some notoriety but not one I'm familiar with. They play a fast and decadent kind of black metal rooted in the orthodox style but featuring plenty of twists and turns. A comparison to the mighty Deathspell Omega can be made, with chanting choirs and a kind of medieval feeling, but Wormreich is not yet on that level. But this overstuffed EP offers some complex and ripping black metal and a creepy excursion in ambient horror called "Codex Luciferium". And guess what, there's a cover of Deathspell Omega's "Malign Paradigm" as well....just so there's no mistaking Wormreich's inspiration. "Wormcult Revelations" is a strong start for the band.

Thantifaxath have a name that invites frequent mangling and hail from the dark metropolis of Toronto. Some comparisons to Wormreich can be made....the band draws a lot of its style from the old school fast and freezng BM of the early 90s but is certainly not afraid to experiment. In fact, Thantifaxath indulge in some very unexpected twists amidst the frigid blasts of raging metal. Piano and saxophone put in appearances during the very avant-garde "Eternally Falling" and a lot of the riffing is unorthodox and challenging, especially on "Where I End and the Hemlock Begins". There is an otherworldly atmosphere clinging to the songs of Thantifaxath and you get the sense they are tapping into something most bands can't reach. But at all times, you are aware that you are listening to BLACK METAL and nothing but.

These are two bands to lead the way in North America.