I slept on Sathamel‘s debut album Horror Vacui, but I’m awake to it now, thanks to the opportunity to present the following playthrough video for one of its electrifying tracks, “Raise Flame From Ash“.
Of course, playthrough videos were fixtures in the metal scene long before the current plague, but are now even more vital ways of allowing musicians and fans to stay connected. And, as in this case, they continue to be vehicles for introducing people to releases they might have missed. This is an especially good introduction (or reminder, for those who are already aware of this UK band’s work), because it’s a guitar playthrough for a song that’s a blazing guitar powerhouse (even though it’s a love song!).
“Raise Flame From Ash” is perfectly named, because the music sounds as if it could turn cold ashes into a roaring fire once again. The song races at a furious pace, and the riffing scorches in wild, exultant fashion, swirling and vibrating as if the skies above have turned red through the rush of a superheated jet-stream. But guitarist KVN also allows the notes to linger, reverberating in gleaming, eerie tones, and causing them to dart, leap, and feverishly jab. The song further includes a scintillating solo that’s in keeping with the music’s overarching air of rampant exhilaration.
KVN is the star of the video, but the song includes other vital ingredients, including a full-throttle, skull-busting, neck-cracking, spine-snapping drum attack, furiously rumbling bass lines, and vocals that are on fire too, morphing from ferocious guttural roars to gritty howls and throat-ripping screams.
This is only the latest of a series of playthrough videos that Sathamel have been putting out, and we’ve included two others along with today’s premiere — plus a full stream of the Horror Vacui album, which comes recommended for fans of Behemoth, Hate (Poland), Belphegor, and Svart Crown. We also have an explanation from vocalist Kruk about the lyrics:
“The lyrical concept behind ‘Raise Flame from Ash‘ is very different compared to any other song on Horror Vacui. While every track on the album tackles topics such as depression, nihility, frustration or creative blocks, this song is the only window for hope in the concept. To begin, this is a love song. It was written for my girlfriend in its entirety, as it was a dare to see if I could write something like this in the style of death metal.
“It was an interesting challenge and a bit of an ironic joke that our love song will have blast beats and guttural vocals. The writing process was also the least strenuous one. I find myself going over my lyrics countless times before I am happy to lock them in with the music, to make sure that they represent myself and the band in the best way possible. Yet, with this song the first draft was the last. I did not find anything I would like to change once it was done. The words and their context worked flawlessly together, along the sweet irony already mentioned. The song provided a medium for my sense of humour as well as for expression of my more positive feelings.
“With the right context in mind, I think it is quite easy to cut out the metaphorical side of the text and understand the lyrics for what they are. They are a statement of what somebody who cares can do for you when you do not feel like doing anything for yourself. The reviving force of someone’s love and support for anything that you do despite the futility around all endeavours. The necromantic spells breathing life back into lungs. The breaking of the mould. The reconstruction after a failure.
“In Britain, there is a slang phrase that goes like this: ‘this boils my piss’. It means that something is very annoying, and thus it boils your piss. Because ‘piss’ would not do very well in a Sathamel song, I replaced ‘piss’ with “blood”. ‘Boil my blood’ was the last lyrical piece of the full spectrum”.
Well, the song sure as hell does get the blood boiling, and we hope you enjoy it! To pick up Horror Vacui for yourself, check these links:
HORROR VACUI — Physical:
HORROR VACUI — Digital:
SATHAMEL ON FACEBOOK: