Sunday, May 4, 2014

Medieval Plague

Medieval Plague - The Harvest
Garazel & Triumf Prod, 2010
Genre: Black Metal

1. Upon the Dusk
2. Forest of Hangmen
3. Morbid Devotion
4. PopioĊ‚y Zbawienia
5. Hail to the King of Flies
6. March of the Martyrs
7. Witchcraft
8. Medieval Plague
9. Sanctvs, Sanctvs in Nihilvm
10. The Dawn
11. Unknown cover song

After having quite a few excellent releases from Under the Sign of Garazel, I've decided to take on acquiring quite a few more of their releases. I feel this label is a great force for the underground Polish Black Metal scene. This is a pro-printed tape limited to 200 hand-numbered copies and I own #123. The booklet is actually really well made and quite beautiful. It comes with picture and a lyric sheet.

Medieval Plague play this very old style of Black Metal that sounds like it was recorded in the early 90's. They really have that gritty under-produced Black Metal feel as well, which only adds to that early atmosphere. The guitars are actually very thin in tone, so it really captures everything that is ancient about the early days of Black Metal. The riffing has elements that are clearly blended from the early Thrash blend and sometimes this can work out very well. The riffs in "Witchcraft" are some of the better found on the album.  To be perfeclty honest, the old school Thrash/Punk styled riffing really isn't something I'm after. Medieval Plague seem to have a bit more of that style than interests me. Sometimes bands like this will have very compelling riffs, but most of the "Harvest" doesn't have that kind of strength. Songs like "Sanctvs" have really great moments though. Just about anytime they really have a good medieval feel in their art it comes out pretty well and I wish they had included more of this on the album. After this the album closes with a cover song that I don't recognize... it's very old school and has a very 80's feel to it... but I just don't recognize it. If anyone wants to clue me in that would be helpful.

So, in the end I wasn't terribly into "The Harvest", but they really are playing a brand of Black Metal that isn't entirely interesting to me. If you are a fan of the much older style that was still in a Thrash transition then you might get more out of this album than I did. The riffing wasn't always catchy or intoxicating though and I think that's where this album is pretty weak. I think this might apply for fans of this genre... but who knows. Give it a listen and judge for yourself!

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