Conquered at the gateways of light
Enslaved in the heavens
Shadows taking over the skies
With infinite malevolence
Feathers of the glorious days are scorched
His kingdom is gone
The sun that once protected now hides
The moon that was the beacon now starves
…Our hunt shall be glorious….
Those are among the lyrics to be found in the song from Fossilization‘s debut album that you’re about to experience. It’s called “Once Was God“, phrased in the past sense because it narrates the vengeful execution of the almighty and all his heavenly minions. As you’ll see, the music is every bit as malevolent and murderous as the lyrical theme, and it revels in its slaughtering, but it also draws us into lightless pits of degradation and death.
Photo by João Martin Jr.
This Brazilian death metal duo (whose members are also a part of the stupendous sludge/death/doom metal band Jupiterian) have already drawn attention in the underground through their 2021 debut EP He Whose Name Was Long Forgotten and a split the following year on the Everlasting Spew label with Portland-based Ritual Necromancy.
At last we will have a full-length, fittingly entitled Leprous Daylight, and it’s set for release on September 8th by the same Everlasting Spew Records, who call it Fossilization‘s “most crushing and brutally wrenching release — 8 new savage tracks soaked in doomy despair”. As a further preview we also have this statement by V, the band’s guitarist, bassist, and vocalist:
“I started working on Leprous Daylight right after the recordings of the split with Ritual Necromancy. I knew I wanted to take a different direction with this full length album, it had to be faster and brutal as much as I could but without compromising my songwriting. I think Leprous Daylight is Fossilization‘s most violent effort so far but still full of the melancholy and sadness you have been used to with our previous releases.”
But as previews go, it’s better to delve into the harrowing music itself.
With no prelude apart from a quick whine of feedback, “Once Was God” begins a turbocharged percussive beating and drowns the senses in a dense morass of distorted riffing — a diseased and depraved swarming sensation undergirded by a huge subterranean low-end presence. But even within that toxic vibrating mass you can detect a lead guitar feverishly roiling, rising, and falling, a transmitter of viciousness.
Fossilization amplify the music’s raging malignancy with raw, ragged guttural bellowing and gagging, but also break up their high-speed battering and voracious swarming with dismal diversions, slower moments where the drums pound, the bass heaves as it chews through gravel, and the guitar abysmally moans, groans, and wails. Eventually it also becomes apparent that at high speed the riffing somehow gleams and soars despite how necrotic it also sounds.
Back and forth the music goes, alternately assaulting and dragging, until the episodes intersect, meshing together the tremolo’d guitar frenzies and the slower and more momentous rhythmic cadence — though it’s rampaging chaos to which Fozzilization return at the end.
Featuring a frightening cover illustration by Rio Oka, Leprous Daylight will be released by Everlasting Spew on multiple formats: CD, tape, and digital, with vinyl editions coming in late 2023. They accurately recommend it for fans of Dead Congregation, Krypts, Spectral Voice, and Incantation.