OLTRETOMBA
The Death - Schieràti con la morte (2014) By xDemoNx

Oltretomba come from the Italian scene and as it happens with most of the bands from Italy, in here too we have a quite special band. They exist since 2007 while the one of their two main members is into Black Metal since 1999. The band has released so far two demos, one single and the full length album that I have received called “The Death - Schieràti con la morte”. Well, this album contains ten compositions and one introduction of overall duration of about forty two minutes and it was released by the Greek Fistbang Records which is devoted to the old school releases. Only by the awesome cover, anyone can understand that here we deal with an Occult release. The band that came immediately to my mind because of the cover and the first few riffs was Mortuary Drape. The album has a lot of elements by this band, most typical example is the Occult atmosphere, but it doesn’t limit itself to that, as it shows to the listener a lot more.

Firstly, the introduction puts you into the wet and dark dungeons where the ritual will take place. It is quite atmospheric, short so as not to be tedious and it sets the scenery as it should be. All of the tracks have been written the same period, that is that we will find tracks which have been written since 2006. However all of them have been re-edited and they have the consistency as they were written the same period. The riffs that we come across here mainly are of medium speed with a lot of influences of old school Heavy and Thrash Metal, influences by the first period of Celtic Frost and for sure of Mortuary Drape. But apart from the above, the listener will come across violent riffs too, more like outbursts, that they also show their influences by the Scandinavian school of Black Metal, as also some slow Doom passages. The duration of the tracks is as long as needed by the tracks so that they achieve to be evolved and to offer a complete result to the listener. The structure of the tracks is very good as there are changes into the atmosphere, into the rhythm and into the riffing while no track is repeating the same pattern, so the album is not tedious for the listener and it maintains his interest during the whole duration of the album.

Regarding the sound, the production is bass and somehow dirty, giving that old school character to the compositions. The mixture is quite good, although that you have to make an effort in order to listen to the bass. It has maintained the balance between the instruments and the vocals putting out a very massive sound that it does not become dirty in any part and the listener can listen to the lines of the instruments. The guitars deliver the riffs flawlessly and they perform the few solos that exist in the tracks with much power. They are played with accuracy, nice technic and much passion. The bass, as many of its lines I managed to listen, is heavy, powerful and solid. The drums have very interesting lines other times rhythmic and very vivid, other times very dark and violent, always played with accuracy and power. The vocals are heavy vocals, they are closer to Death than to Black but they are very expressive and they add power to the compositions. Finally, another element that I liked is the lyrics. They are written in English and they speak of death, rituals, occultism and Satanism.

It seems that the first full length work of Oltretomba is a result of years of working. The old school aesthetic of the album will remind to the older and will show to the younger how the true old school Black Metal really is. For sure the fans of the bands I mentioned above will appreciate this album. I believe though that this album will be appreciated by all Black Metal (and not only) fans, so I suggest you to listen to it.

1. Descending the Crypt 01:26
2. Crash the Disincarnated 04:43
3. The Altar of Succubus 03:35
4. Damnation Forth 04:40
5. Ashes to Dust 03:25
6. Silence... People Are Dying! 04:01
7. Lustful Skin 04:17
8. To Turn a Storm Against God 03:44
9. Cult of the Shadows 05:02
10. No Future 03:19
11. They Are Coming 03:46