Benighted Desecration

Cadaver Shrine

How does some rather comfortless and dismal death doom grab you? If you prefer life […]
February 19, 2023
Cadaver Shrine - Benighted Desecration album cover

How does some rather comfortless and dismal death doom grab you? If you prefer life on the drearier and more desolate end of the metal spectrum, trve underground CADAVER SHRINE will tickle your morbid fancies. A Dutch one-man altar of worship to all things grim and gnarly, CADAVER SHRINE displays a pleasingly dismal forty minutes of death doom dedication in the debut album, "Benighted Desecration". This is insidiously despondent doom-infused death metal, in a similar vein to the oppressive noise-fuelled trudge of ANATOMIA, will the same comfortless sludge smeared over eight tracks in a jarring and crushing onslaught of disconsolate misery.

"Benighted Desecration" offers little reprieve, with "The Reverberation" setting its stall of malevolence out in a dark veil of distorted doom, melded with the dankest swathes of death. "And Death Crawls" continues in the same limping onslaught, whilst "Dragged Away" ensures that its evil doom-laced nastiness harnesses plenty of creep and crawl in the guitars to offer dank echoes and distorted wallowing to last for weeks. At this point, it must be mentioned that the vocals are especially unnerving and whilst not always coherent (isn't that part of the fun?!), the depth of Mories' pained growls are impressive and weighty.

Thus far, clarity isn't something top of the list for CADAVER SHRINE, but the deliberate aloofness that imbues ensures a stifling coolness that lures you deep into its dark jaws. "The Black Door", for example, opens with a cleaner tone and takes a more traditional death metal stance with some quality, flaying riffs that slam into your face, whilst "Tongues Spread" opts to revisit the familiar slow churning of earlier tracks and beckons that pernicious dragging the full-length became accustomed to earlier on. Interestingly, the title-track ditches the coherence of the mostly death doom structure to flex its brawny muscles in a faster, chunkier affair, with "Faceless Abomination" following suit. Disappointingly, though, the mix on the drums doesn't always allow for you to completely immerse yourself in these more maniacal tempos, and they can feel a little 'lost' in amongst the distortion of the guitars.

The full-length balances morbid and miserable in equal measure, but there's something about "Benighted Desecration" that doesn't quite make it stand out amongst its peers. After chewing this release over several times, the stark reality that the mix and production is one of the main sticking-points became very apparent to me. Whilst suitably cavernous and cold - exactly how you'd expect an album to sound in this genre - there often feels like a lack of synergy and the ability to showcase some real highlights (those tempos spring to mind) isn't always present to do this album justice. Despite my personal gripes with the production, the full-length is a perturbing enough listen with the kind of vocals that reach deep into the pit of your stomach and attempt to harvest your soul, so I'd encourage you to dig into the album's dark glory.

7 / 10









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"Benighted Desecration" Track-listing:

1. The Reverberation
2. And Death Crawls
3. Dragged Away
4. The Black Door
5. Tongues Spread
6. Benighted Desecration
7. Faceless Abomination
8. The Shattered Corpse

Cadaver Shrine Lineup:

Mories - Vocals and all instrumentals

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