TEMPLE OF PERDITION: Tetragrammaton

The blackened death outfit from Texas and Finland peaked everyone’s interest with their demo, only to blow them away with this full length debut that transcends its extreme metal typeset with class and approachability. Black metal usually gets a bad rep for its minimalist, low production values and uniformity in sound, but Tetragrammaton ¬†seamlessly melds black metal, death metal, and doom, with other rock and progressive elements for a genuine fury meets finesse scenario. Temple of Perdition approach their songwriting from a Messianic Jewish mindset. All three songs from the demo are carried over: “The Last Temptation” where a guest vocalist portrays the devil tempting Christ in the wilderness, the doomy majesty of “Adonai,” or my favorite, the spectacular “Kunnia Herralle” (translating to ‘Honor to the Lord’.) It had me singing along in Finnish, and I don’t even know Finnish! The band infuses nature sounds like water, falling rain, or crows, with chanting monks, and mournful female vocals to flesh out the extreme metal punishment they dish out. The female vocals are illustrated best on the long playing closer “Mourning Star,” where they really make the song something special. “Priests of Perdition” begins with a narrated piece, then erupts into a piece of metal that showcases just how good drummer Joonas Heikkinen (The Slave Eye, Angel of Sodom, Renascent) is on the skins. The chanting really adds to the atmosphere of the disc, as well as Benaja’s deep growl. Ignore this masterpiece at your own expense. It’s that good. Nine songs just wasn’t enough. Packaging came out really nicely on both the cd and the vinyl versions, which come in five different unique color patterns. Buy now. (Vision of God Records) 4 out of 5 stars

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