Released: 2013, Memento Mori
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Twenty one years ago, Death Metal band Feretrum released From Far Beyond, their sole full length album. Hailing from Spain, the band was one of the first Death Metal bands from that country and seemed to have a lot of potential as they had improved their execution after two earlier demos. The album was released on cassette format only, with limited pressing (only a hundred copies were pressed), causing the record to be buried and forgotten. Now, the Spain-based label,Memento Mori are re-releasing this obscure gem for fans who are anxious to re-discover obscure Death Metal bands. It will apparently include some new cover artwork and a booklet with information about the band's history.
One of the things that listeners will immediately notice is that "From Far Beyond" has a very raw production job. Guitars sometimes sound like the eruption of a volcano, and they tend to drown out the drums during certain sections of the songs. There's some tape hiss here and there, too. Vocals here reminded me of the classic band Von, with its guttural growls-meets-raspy-vocals style. Most of the songs on "From Far Beyond" were new at the time, except for one from their older demos (Euthanasy).
There's a lot of rhythmic variation in these songs, it is evident even with the lo fi production values. The record also has a Black Metal flavor to the guitar riffs, and there are also Thrash Metal elements present. After an intro that sounds like someone or something crawling out of a tomb, the band kicks in with their music, a blending of Entombed, old Morbid Angel, and U.K. band Necrosanct (who also had a similar production on their Equal in Death album). After that first song, called "Carnal Destruction", the title track begins with a start-stop attack, something the band uses a lot in this album.
The song also includes some keyboard effects during the middle section of the song, in which the band slows the tempo down to a crawl, creating a very dark atmosphere. Many songs show this tendency as well, such as "Usurpation of Souls" and "Viate Fobia". During these parts, the production adds to the dark atmosphere the band's music conveys. Even though it may be detrimental to some listeners, the production could also very well be considered part of the charm of this record.
Overall, this band is worth rediscovering, and if listeners can get past the raw production, they will get to enjoy what Feretrum had to offer. Apparently the band is still active, though they have not released any new material for a while. An article mentioned that the band went for a more Grindcore approach later in their career. Whatever the case, the incarnation of the band
that brought us "From Far Beyond" had a very dark, brooding sound that made for some very interesting music .
Review by Titus Isaac López