Released: 2013, Basick Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
I heard of these guys through my favorite label, Basick Records; based in the UK. The first thing I saw of theirs was a play-through video and, let me tell you, I was hooked right away! These 8 string warriors are from Parma, Italy and my god can they bring the brutality! The album almost immediately blows you away! The guitars are tight and punchy with the kick drum closely following the guitar patterns, the bass is booming and the vocalist knows exactly what to do with his lines, his phrasing and intensity is spot on all the way. The 1st track is 1:29 long and I'm already impressed!
Going through the album, you realize that there really is something unique about these guys. I think it comes from their relentless attitude towards the music, there aren't many clean breaks or slowed down parts really, everything is go, go go! But not in a boring way, each track brings something that is definitely recognizable as them but different from the every other track, this is a good thing!
The riff ideas are interesting and complex, but not so complex that you're confused and the song structures are spot on with enough of a theme to bring it together as a song, but at the same time enough variance to keep it interesting. The Obsidian Fate is one of my favorite tracks here, it's chugging, powerful and weirdly melodic at the same time. The vocalist really shows he screaming prowess here, he's so intense I can almost feel his voice!
The production on this release is blindingly good, I can hear as many details as I want and pick out each instrument (and with 8 string guitars, that's great!) I am truly impressed by the way they've chosen to present their sound, it's not over produced but I do wish sometimes that I could hear those scrapes on the strings and other little sounds that remind you it's a human behind all those notes.
As far as a band with a name like Damned Spring Fragrantia go (what the hell does this even mean?) these masters of metal from Italy have produced a great album with lots of ideas. I look forward to hearing more from these crazy Italians.
Review by Kyle Sevenoaks