Feral Horde - _Progressive Downfall_
(Independent, 2003)
by: Alvin Wee (6.5 out of 10)
This Toronto-based horde has apparently been getting some attention locally, and for good reason too. _Progressive Downfall_ is a step up from the patchiness of their previous demo, with an infectious blackened spirit permeating all nine of the black metal blizzards on disc. The first song impresses right away with the dark brilliance of its melody and unrelenting pace recalling the early Swedish scene, or perhaps some of the newer underground European acts. The band flaunt their prowess with a full black metal instrumental track -- not one of those insipid acoustic interludes -- but not too far along, tell-tale signs of weak arrangement and a general lack of tightness begin to creep into the recording. I'd put it down to a simple lack of recording budget and time, but the recurrence of awkward transitions in later tracks like "Vagabond" and "Tool of Damnation" hint at the band's inexperience in song-writing and studio work. Nevertheless, the sheer passion and energy of the music shine through clearly throughout the album, and the chainsaw riffing assumes a certain authority when coupled with the vocalist's manic howling. Most of the tunes are downright hummable, and this ease of melody throughout the forty-plus minutes of music make this one helluva ride for any maniac missing the early days of Thy Primordial and the like. With that said, there's still plenty of room for improvement, and a good portion of the material on each track would end up on the cutting-room floor of a more experienced band. Nevertheless it's a worthwhile listen; such budding talent is hard to ignore.

Contact: http://www.geocities.com/feralhorde/

(article published 26/12/2003)

5/13/2003 A Wee 3 Feral Horde - Demo 2002
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