Title: Panegyric of Death - The Synoptic Picture of Negativism
Label: Drakkar Productions
Review by JH
The Brazilian vectors of plague known as Vulturine return with their fourth album, Panegyric of Death – The Synoptic Picture of Negativism, released under the banner of France’s Drakkar Productions. Also worth noting is that the band’s debut album, Ossos… Ódio & Angústia, has recently been reissued by the same label.
Their recent signing to Drakkar could be a sign of good things to come: they’ve been steeped in obscurity for the better part of their existence, getting reviews and doing interviews mostly for DIY ‘zines. Now, I can get my hands on their excellent debut that’s been out of print for years. I’m going to have to review that one too pretty soon. Onto the music…
The latest instalment from this band unfolds over a duration of 39 minutes of intense, obscure black metal, and sees the band expanding their sound and venture into new territories. When faced with the task of describing the music, adjectives like“atmospheric,” “sinister,” and “idiosyncratic”comes to mind. The music explores various tempos, ranging from mid to fast paced accented by hammering double bass interlaced with the occasional blast. The vocals are a bit deeper than on previous recordings, though very fitting to the music and well performed; a bellowing growl that switches to more raspy sounding vocals at the appropriate moments.
There’s a lot of interesting textures interspersed throughout, with a procession of quirky, yet solid riffs. One of my favourite songs is the second track “Mare” which perfectly encapsulates what I’m talking about. All instruments are well performed and bring something to the table.
Admittedly, the album can be difficult to listen to at first, with its massively dense production and complex song arrangements; but it starts to make sense the more you listen. Like all good music, it requires patience and attention in order to fully appreciate. After repeated spins, I can tell you it only gets better and better. Once you get used to the style, you’ll start to enjoy all the textures and nuances.
Panegyric of Death – The Synoptic Picture of Negativism is another solid entry into the band’s discography; however, if you’re going to check this band out, I would advise you to start with their older albums and work your way up, particularly their underrated debut, Ossos… Ódio & Angústia.” I don’t really have any criticisms except that it would’ve been nice if they included an extra track or two, although I guess the length of the songs makes up for that. I hope their next offering will arrive a bit sooner than four years.