ASTROPHOBOS, the Black Metal trio from Sweden, have returned with a new EP Enthroned In Flesh. I didn’t get a chance to hear their debut full-length, 2014’s Remnants of Forgotten Horrors before putting this one on, so I had nothing to compare it to. But that’s okay, because this is still some pretty dark, angry, evil stuff. And the overall sound is very warm and thick, unlike much of the genre that sounds cold and tinny sometimes.
Of the four tracks offered here the first one that dug its claws into me was “Tabula Rasa”, particularly because of the drum work by MARDUK’S Fredrik Widigs (who plays on all songs) that, along with the guitars of Jonas Ehlin and Martin Andersson, really pounds you into submission. Bassist/vocalist Micke Broman sounds especially sinister in his delivery here, and his playing is stride for stride with the drum patterns, so you really feel it in your chest.
Opener and title track “Enthroned In Flesh” sounds like a horde of Barbarians storming the castle and out for blood, as does “Blood Libation”. However the latter has more buzzsaw riffs than the former. Still, they’re both deliciously murderous. Closer “The Cadaver Monarch” is a very ambitious piece of music and clocks in at 8:21. It captures that nighttime snow in the woods feel very well and I can only imagine this one in a live setting…wow!
Overall, this is a very good offering from ASTROPHOBOS, one I can recommend to any fan who enjoys their Black Metal without hesitation. Did they reinvent the wheel? Absolutely not. What they DID do is give us a ferocious 20-minute EP, and that’s good enough for me. And I can’t wait to see what their next full-length album brings. Enthroned In Flesh is out now on Triumvirate Records, so grab your copy today.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Tabula Rasa”, “The Cadaver Monarch”