Various - _The Return of Darkness and Hate_
(Drakkar, 2001)
by: Alvin Wee (8 out of 10)
Probably the most eagerly anticipated underground compilation this year, and understandably so: the mere thought of fifteen previously unreleased tracks by names like Unpure, Sabbat, Mutiilation, Demon Realm, etc. are enough to make a die-hard blackster cream his pants. Aussies Anatomy kick off the festivities with a ripping preview of their new album _The Witches of Dathomir_, while Celestia rapidly takes over with their expected brand of melodic, Swedish-inspired black metal, showing unsurprisingly little progress from their MCD material. French underground proponents Count Nosferatu prove their worth with a semi-symphonic piece of darkness reminiscent of early Mysticum, which turns out to be one of the more memorable tracks on the CD. I've never quite liked Sweden's Unpure, but "Incubus" rapidly makes me reconsider my stand with its unique blend of oppressive dissonance and strangely headbang-inducing crunchiness. It's well followed up by an dual Asian onslaught: Singaporean thrashers Impiety are in fine form after signing to Drakkar and blast the faces off any detractors with the raging "Sodomythical Frostgoats"; the Japanese legend Sabbat follow hot on their heels with a marginally more subdued but no less crushing live outtake "Evoke the Evil". It's doubtful that any band can successfully follow up such killer tracks, but the French-cult Mutiilation holds the fort pretty well in the expected Burzum-esque style. By this time, it isn't so easy to remain clear-headed about each track anymore, and after the following unimpressive track it's easy to understand why Danish destroyers Demon Realm have received mixed reviews in the past. Still not a bad piece, and the same mediocrity could be applied to Norway's Nebular Mystic, who follow on with a typically symphonic approach. Two French hordes come on next with marginally better results: Temple of Baal with a strangely convincing crudeness and mayhem, while Garwall adopt a slightly more sober approach with some semblance of melody lurking at the edges. Japanese crew Magane are a breath of fresh air after the suffocating bout of primitiveness, offering a more melodic style reminiscent of now-defunct country-mates Tyrant, but the repetition of "Izanafi" makes for somewhat tiring listening after a while. Cursed is the only band refusing to provide contact info in the nicely laid-out booklet, but are somehow terribly compelling with their brand of dirty, primitive evilness. Certainly a band to keep an eye on, more so than Grimlord or Nebiros, who round off the gala with two tracks of pedestrian, yet not unpromising blackness. All in all a great buy for any dedicated follower of the underground, and a fantastic introduction for anyone who's ever wondered about the Drakkar circle of bands: they're all here in full glory. $18 from the label.

Contact: drakkar2@wanadoo.fr

(article published 13/5/2001)


ALBUMS
12/29/2010 C Drishner 8 Various - Tribute to H.P. Lovecraft - Gate 1: Yogsothery - Chaosmogonic Rituals of Fear
12/14/2010 N Shahpazov 8.5 Various - Whom the Moon a Nightsong Sings
4/2/2010 Q Kalis Various - Rising of Yog-Sothoth: Tribute to Thergothon
1/8/2009 C Drishner Various - Anthrosphere Volume 1
9/17/2008 P Azevedo 7.5 Various - My Own Wolf: A New Approach to Ulver
8/9/2008 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - Metal Message IV
6/22/2008 Q Kalis 8 Various - ...Where Tattered Clouds Are Stranding
6/17/2008 Q Kalis 5.5 Various - Extreme Metal Inside
6/13/2008 Q Kalis 8 Various - Might Is Right: Nordic Warchants II
6/11/2008 Q Kalis 4.5 Various - Bajo el Signo de la Violencia: Tribute to Masacre
10/7/2007 Q Kalis 7 Various - Rise of the Eastern Blood
7/24/2007 Q Kalis 8 Various - Might Is Right - Nordic Warchants Pt. I
7/4/2007 Q Kalis 7 Various - Aural Holograms Vol. I
4/20/2007 Q Kalis 8.5 Various - Noise.IL
4/15/2007 Q Kalis Various - Fine-Tuned Disasters
4/5/2007 Q Kalis Various - Defaced and Split
3/25/2007 Q Kalis 8 Various - Fuck the Modern World
3/8/2007 J Ulrey 7.5 Various - Intoxicated Vol. 4
2/24/2007 K Sarampalis 7 Various - Metal Message Vol III
1/28/2007 Q Kalis 8.5 Various - A Reassuring Voice on the Television
1/9/2007 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - Hauautagused Karjed Vol. II: Estonian Extreme Metal Compilation
12/26/2006 Q Kalis 8 Various - All My Dead Friends
11/7/2005 N Shahpazov 7 Various - The Wood Brothers
1/10/2005 T DePalma 7.5 Various - Listen Without Distraction - A Tribute to Kyuss
10/19/2004 P Azevedo 7 Various - Fenriz Presents... The Best of Old-School Black Metal
1/17/2004 A McKay 3.5 Various - Defenders of Metal Volume 1 - The Seduction
11/16/2003 X Hoose 7 Various - Japanese Assault
8/31/2003 J Montague 8 Various - Barbaric Onslaught (Australian Metal Attack)
5/29/2003 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - Victory Through Total Domination: Compilation No. III
5/27/2003 A Wee 7 Various - The Obsolete View
4/5/2003 P Azevedo 8 Various - Better Undead Than Alive
3/31/2003 P Azevedo 7.5 Various - Svartmetall Compilation 2001
3/26/2003 X Hoose 4 Various - Covered in Blood: A Tribute to Slayer
4/12/2002 B Meloon 6 Various - Czech Assault
4/12/2002 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - The Bells of the Mystical Empire
1/14/2002 A Wee 6 Various - Hellion Promo Vol II
1/14/2002 A McKay 7 Various - Colorado Colossus
10/19/2001 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - Beauty in Darkness 5
8/12/2001 A McKay 2 Various - Brazilian Assault
8/12/2001 V Eldefors 7 Various - Triarchy of Vasconia
8/12/2001 A Wee 9 Various - Black Metal Blitzkrieg
5/13/2001 A McKay 8 Various - Requiems of Revulsion: A Tribute to Carcass
3/13/2001 A McKay 4 Various - Chamber Metal: Neo-Classical Metal Guitar
3/13/2001 A McKay 6.5 Various - Overload 2: Tribute to Metallica
1/10/2001 A McKay 6.5 Various - Scream Forth Blasphemy: A Tribute to Morbid Angel
11/20/2000 A McKay 2 Various - Dead Zeppelin - A Metal Tribute to Led Zeppelin
11/20/2000 A McKay 6.5 Various - In the Sign of the Horns - A Tribute to Venom
11/20/2000 G Sanchez 7 Various - Economi$ed
11/20/2000 G Sanchez 8 Various - Coalescence
10/25/2000 A McKay 6 Various - Gateway to Hell 2: Tribute to Slayer
10/25/2000 A McKay 7 Various - King Diamond Tribute
10/25/2000 A Cantwell 7.5 Various - World of Pain -- A Tribute to Sepultura
10/25/2000 A Cantwell 7.5 Various - Jump in the Pit -- A Tribute to Testament
10/25/2000 A McKay 9.5 Various - Root of All Evil 2000 2nd Anniversary Sampler
8/12/2000 A McKay 5 Various - Raise the Flag of Hate: A Tribute to Kreator
8/12/2000 A McKay 8 Various - Curse of the Demon: A Tribute to Mercyful Fate
5/25/2000 A Bromley 3 Various - Power From the North
5/25/2000 A Bromley 7.5 Various - Panther: A Tribute to Pantera
3/5/2000 A Bromley 8.5 Various - Holy Dio: Tribute to Ronnie James Dio
1/15/2000 M Noll 2 Various - A Tribute to Accept
1/15/2000 P Azevedo 8 Various - To Magic...
12/9/1999 P Schwarz 8 Various - 21st Century Media Blitz Vol. 2
12/9/1999 A Bromley 8.5 Various - Never Give In: A Tribute to Bad Brains
8/12/1999 A McKay 3 Various - A Tribute to Hell: Satanic Rites
8/12/1999 P Schwarz 3 Various - ECW Extreme Music
8/12/1999 G Sanchez 6 Various - Lobot Manual
8/12/1999 G Sanchez 7.5 Various - Needlepoint
8/12/1999 A McKay 9 Various - White: Nightmares in the End
7/7/1999 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Death... Is Just the Beginning 5
6/15/1999 P Azevedo 5 Various - Psyclone Sinphonies
6/15/1999 A Wasylyk 6.5 Various - Beauty in Darkness Vol. 3
6/15/1999 A McKay 8.5 Various - Smells Like Team Spirit III
5/19/1999 G Sanchez 6.5 Various - Extreme America 3
5/19/1999 A McKay 7 Various - Straight to Hell -- A Tribute to Slayer
5/19/1999 G Sanchez 7.5 Various - Freak Animal Zine #11 CD
5/19/1999 P Azevedo 8 Various - Where We Go, Others Can Only Follow...
5/19/1999 A Cantwell 8.5 Various - Chords of the Grave
5/19/1999 A McKay 8.5 Various - To Live Is Ever to Be in Danger
3/14/1999 A Bromley 7 Various - Black Mark Tribute II
3/14/1999 A McKay 7 Various - In Conspiracy With Satan
3/14/1999 G Sanchez 8 Various - WWF - The Music Vol. 3
2/13/1999 A Cantwell 8.5 Various - Full Moon Productions Sampler CD
1/16/1999 P Schwarz 5 Various - Roadkill
1/16/1999 P Schwarz 7 Various - Feuersturm Vol. II: The Ultimate Storm
1/16/1999 P Schwarz 8 Various - Wardance
1/16/1999 A Cantwell 8 Various - From Kaamos to Midnight Sun -- Finnish Metal Compilation
11/19/1998 A Bromley 8 Various - GRRRR!!: Extreme Music From Vancouver
10/1/1998 P Schwarz 7 Various - Cry Now, Cry Later -- Vols. 3 & 4
10/1/1998 A Cantwell 7 Various - Songs From the Penalty Box: Volume 2
10/1/1998 P Schwarz 8 Various - Amduscias
9/1/1998 P Azevedo 6 Various - High Radiation 4
9/1/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Call on the Dark II
9/1/1998 B Meloon 7 Various - Bestial Sampler: 1997-1998
9/1/1998 A Wasylyk 8 Various - Fiesta Comes Alive!
9/1/1998 P Schwarz 9 Various - Statements of Intent
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 6 Various - Blackened III
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Statements of Intent
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 8 Various - Sepultural Feast: A Tribute to Sepultura
6/7/1998 P Azevedo Various - Peaceville X
6/7/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Call To Irons: A Tribute to Iron Maiden
6/7/1998 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Voyager: 10 Years Nuclear Blast
6/7/1998 B Meloon 8 Various - Until the End of Time
1/1/1998 A Wasylyk 5 Various - A Declaration of Independence
1/1/1998 A Gaudrault 7 Various - Masters of Misery - Black Sabbath: The Earache Tribute
1/1/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Untitled (ten)
11/17/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - Earache Unplugged 2
7/14/1997 A Wasylyk 3 Various - The Kanada Compilation
7/14/1997 Z Tsarfin 7 Various - Awakenings: Females in Extreme Music
7/14/1997 A Bromley 9 Various - A Black Mark Tribute
6/7/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - The Ozz-Fest: Live
5/13/1997 P Azevedo 8 Various - Out of the Dark Live Compilation
5/13/1997 S Hoeltzel 9 Various - World Domination II
2/5/1997 A Bromley 5 Various - Frozen Dawn III
2/5/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - The Absolute Supper
1/2/1997 A Wasylyk 9 Various - Beneath the Icy Floe: A Projekt Sampler V.4
8/12/1996 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Black Mark Attack
8/12/1996 G Filicetti 9 Various - ...And Even Wolves Hid Their Teeth
7/17/1996 A Bromley 9 Various - Beauty In Darkness
6/9/1996 S Hoeltzel 7 Various - Nordic Metal: A Tribute to Euronymous
4/18/1996 N Bassett 7 Various - In Memory of Celtic Frost
3/14/1996 A Bromley 7 Various - Identity II
3/14/1996 N Bassett 8 Various - With Us Or Against Us
1/17/1996 G Filicetti 9 Various - Four Ways To Misery
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