Gravferd - _Demonized_
(Northern Silence, 2006)
by: Pedro Azevedo (4.5 out of 10)
_Demonized_ is a collection of demos from 1996, 1997 and 2000 that finally allows Gravferd to see their material released on CD. This isn't to say the demos have been remastered or their sound somehow improved, however: make no mistake, this is distinctly lo-fi, demo tape sound quality. If you can get over that, then Gravferd's brand of black metal is not without its merits. Some unusual flirting with clean vocals occurs early on, where faster passages with symphonic synths are not uncommon -- though both are eventually abandoned in favour of a more straightforward style.

Gravferd are just a generally competent band, and for this collection's 70+ minute duration, there is nothing especially innovative or remarkable to the point of overcoming the crippling sound quality. Unfortunately it isn't even the type of lo-fi production that might lend the material some extra character (save arguably for the first demo), and it only seems to get worse as the demo goes on. This is not a bad release if seen in the light that was surely intended when it was assembled, in the sense that it collects three demos from a previously unpublished band that was not bad at all in its day. Whether _Demonized_ will be of any interest to anyone but the most hardcore underground black metal collectors is much more debatable however.


(article published 29/10/2006)

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