Lord Mantis


Written by: PP on 16/04/2012 19:02:13

As the artwork for "Pervertor" suggests, we are dealing with an obscure, kvlt black metal band who single-handedly redefine your perception of what sounds 'evil' if you're not familiar with black metal in the past. And no, Lord Mantis is not your typical atmospheric black metal with lengthy tremolo shredding providing a melodic backdrop to the otherwise brutal and blackened mix, this is black metal of the shoebox style, where the vocalist's howls sound like the crackling distortion of someone tortured in a murky prison cell somewhere in the middle east, recorded through a short wave radio transmitter. So yeah, pretty kvlt and evil stuff overall, indeed.

But as is most often the case with Candlelight Records releases, the musical experience is a near-guaranteed spot on one in its given genre. In the case of Lord Mantis, it is the droning guitars that make the difference. Where most black metal bands showcase their love for the tremolo in various ways, Lord Mantis go for the raw, uncompromising route instead, delivering blasphemous, ear-torturing black metal in droning tempos that often feels like waves of shredders are being thrown in your direction at an inexplicable force. It oozes and sounds of pure evil of the psychopathic serial-killer kind, which I suspect has been the objective all-along. Disturbing is the key word I'd use to describe "Pervertor" in just one word.

But the onerous listening task set aside, what is "Pervertor" actually worth in terms of the overall grade? For starters, the instrumentals are innovative and original, which you would expect from a band featuring members of Nachtmystium, so the band sounds different from the rest of the black metal crew out there. But there are also moments during which the soundscape of "Pervertor" sounds too suffocating and stifling to be properly enjoyed. Yes, that's the whole point of kvlt evil tr00 black metal, and in that sense Lord Mantis have delivered on expectations. But one is left wishing for something more, perhaps lengthier instrumental sections and a little improvement on the horrific vocals for an even higher grade.


Download: Septichrist, Vile Divinity
For the fans of: kvlt black metal, drone metal, sludge
Listen: Bandcamp

Release date 13.03.2012
Candlelight Records

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