Gnaw Their Tongues, Cloak of Altering, De Magia Veterum, Golden Ashes, Hagetisse, The Black Mysteries, The Sombre….
Is this a music shopping list? It could be, probably should be if you’re looking for a mental carnival of wild and disturbing rides, but instead it’s a list of projects through which Maurice de Jong (aka Mories) has exercised (and exorcized) his mind, and it’s far from a complete list. Many names of both current and past projects of Mories are missing, but still, the list grows longer – because on February 10th Chaos Records will release Benighted Desecration, the debut album of a new Mories project named Cadaver Shrine.
What interests does Mories channel through this new endeavor? You might have an inkling if you caught Cadaver Shrine‘s two-song demo last Halloween. If you missed that, you might have seen this portrayal in the metal press, lifted from the PR for Chaos Records: “Born out of the love for ancient Metal of Death as well as doom, Cadaver Shrine are indeed putrefied, reeking of the same eternal rot of classic Bolt Thrower, Autopsy, and other more underground-entrenched entities.” Or this:
“Hulking and unremittingly heavy, Benighted Desecration rolls forward with the ominous intent of a tank; riffs crush bones, and the eerie twist of melody coursing through them adds an exquisite touch of doom. But, like The Sombre‘s iteration of doom-death is a twisted one, so is Cadaver Shrine‘s death metal: bouts of bestial speed crop up, sometimes jarringly/unsettlingly, and many moments of deathcrush are held longer for maximum hypnotic effect. However, the all-encompassing atmosphere of the album is one of putridity, its production tar-thick and sweltering”.
Those words and name-drops left us hungry before hearing the actual product. Of course, the line of bands who’ve drawn their inspiration from the likes of Bolt Thrower and Autopsy, and also seeking to immerse themselves in sonic filth, might stretch from here to the moon, but addicts such as us still wait with open arms for more, and especially when you have a creative force like Mories, who never seems to do anything by rote.
Which brings us to the new song we’re presenting today, “The Black Door“. As forecast, the riffing sounds like a massive tank attack, big pistons pumping and corroded gears whining, with the drums firing off the munitions. Mories‘ guttural voice roars the commands from abyssal depths, and the guitar seethes in vicious spasms, heightening the sense that the assault comes from hell.
It’s a grim and pulverizing infliction, made even more fearsome by shrill whirling tones, great moaning chords, dismal arpeggios that writhe in agony, and convulsive drum battering. Megaton bombs seem to go off, and the music rises up like an immense tower of pain. There’s terrible grandeur on the other side of this black door, as well as eerie, wraith-like vibrations that add to the song’s unearthly atmosphere.
“The Black Door” isn’t the first song to be revealed from the album. That one was “And Death Crawls“, and as the title suggests, it is indeed a doomed crawl. The drumming puts the whip to the listener’s neck and methodically spits bullets and somersaults, but the riffing is a dragging immensity, and the vocals are harrowing in their bestial heartlessness.
Dense waves of agony also flow through the music, and again there are ghostly maneuvers in the high end of the range that make the music even more unearthly, and chilling enough to raise goosebumps on the flesh. Before the end, the song becomes the sound of apocalypse.
You will probably conclude from these two songs, as we have, that Mories has indeed put his own spin on the ancient crucible of doom-directed death metal, and the spin sends it into nightmare realms. Yes, the music is brutishly crushing and foul, but also looms like obsidian monuments of desolation crafted by enslaved spirits for whom pain has no end.