SANCTOPHOBY
Malicious Call/Xрам Древнего Зла (EP 2013) By xDemoNx

Sanctophoby is an one man band which comes from Lithuania and exists since 2007. After three split albums, two demos and a single, in May of 2013 they release the EP entitled Malicious Call/Xрам Древнего Зла. In this album they present us two tracks (as it is also mentioned by its title) that they last for about fifteen minutes. Under the dark and very imposing cover, we come across dark, harsh Black Metal, as threatening and violent as the cover. The music of Sanctophoby is characterized mostly by the heavy and dark atmosphere, combining their fast, straightforward Black Metal with elements by Bestial Black Metal, Thrash, Doom even by a few Funeral Doom elements.

The album begins and ends with two ambient themes which introduce the listener to the dark and “rotten” atmosphere that will follow. The riffs are mainly of two kinds, either Thrashy – rhythmic, or brutal Black Metal. To the already heavy atmosphere, the Doom elements and the Bestial bursts are added in order to make it even more dirty and dark. The riffs are based on simple, straightforward melodies that they are quite interesting. At the same time the structure of the tracks is worked very well, with a lot of changes to the riffs, combined nicely with each other, they maintain the listeners’ interest throughout the compositions. The guitars are the instrument that plays the first role into the compositions. They are a little louder by the rest of the instruments and they are responsible to set the basis so that the atmosphere will be created. With their passion and power that they are played, they achieve to drag the listener with them. The bass fills the sound well, but it is almost not audible at all. The drums have simple lines and they keep the rhythm quite well, although in some part they show instability. The vocals in the fast parts are wild heavy growls, while in the more rhythmic they become harsh, raw Black Metal vocals.

If you have read all the above and continue to read, then you have already understood and you are familiar with the sound that you will come across in this Ep. The production puts out a very dark, dirty and chaotic, almost as a recorded rehearsal. The mixture is balanced, but also here their intervention seams to be to a minimum level. I think that for the style and the atmosphere of the compositions the choice of the band to have that kind of sound is the most correct as it absolutely match the style of the band and the general feeling that they put out, while it doesn’t bother during the listen. The lyrics, if I understood correctly are written in English in the first track and in Russian in the second and they are not contained in the 7’’.

This Ep, surely, doesn’t have to offer anything new to the genre. However it is a quite good job, with interesting compositions and atmosphere which can easily drag the listener. This Ep has been released to only 333 copies so that the fanatics of the genre to buy it. For the rest of you, I suggest to listen to it.

1. Malicious Call 08:09
2. Xрам Древнего Зла 07:13