This band is a fine revelation into Occult Rock/Hard Rock.
November 30, 2023

What some call Occult Rock is nothing more than a pre-Metal Hard Rock sonority using dark and occult lyrical themes, popularized on the late years of the 60 by bands as COVEN and BLACK WIDOW. And after a long time lying as dead, the genre came back due the work of bands as GHOST (on “Opus Eponymous” era), THE DEVIL’S BLOOD, WITCH MOUNTAIN and BLOOD CEREMONY, amongst others. And of course some promising names are arising from time to time, as the North American quintet SUSPIRIORUM (from Austin, Texas) with their EP “Suspiriorum”. The band’s musical work lies in the same trench of acts as BLUE ÖYSTER CULT, COVEN and others, or in other words, a melodic form of early Hard Rock with hooking melodies and careful arrangements, where dark/occult themes are used (as can be heard on the intro of “Regina de Sangre”, a clear influence of old horror films’ soundtracks on their work).

It’s like everything on the genre sounded before the Witch of Birmingham (namely BLACK SABBATH) came and spread darkness through the world. Sometimes deeper and melancholic, sometimes abrasive and nasty, but always catching, their music really seduces the listeners easily. The sonority is a blend: on the instrumental tunes, they prefer to have something organic and recorded in a ‘plug ‘n’ play’ way, to keep things as simple as possible. On the other hand, they took advantage of modern devices on studio to define things, to make their musical expression clear to anyone.

“Regina Di Sangue” has an intro similar to things on B-Horror films (no complaints about it) coming before a strong and climatic Hard Rock song, filled with excellent bass guitar and drums arrangements on the rhythms that sustain a somber song. On “Mother Suspiriorum”, the quintet uses a more abrasive and heavier outfit (without tearing apart their melodic appeal) due the presence of nasty guitars. And on “The Dark Knows”, there are contrasts between moments in a more aggressive way with ethereal Space Rock traces, and a very good singing of the vocals. And “I Love the Night” (that seems to be a bonus track of the physical edition) is into a deeper and melancholic way, using a set of ballad-like elements to show that the quintet has an ample range of musical ideas to use.

The only thing that’s lefty to say about “Suspiriorum” is that it reveals a very good new name on the genre, and makes the fans think why in the blazes SUSPIRIORUM didn’t release a full album!

8 / 10









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"Suspiriorum" Track-listing:
  1. Regina Di Sangue
  2. Mother Suspiriorum
  3. The Dark Knows
  4. I Love the Night
Suspiriorum Lineup:

Suzy Bravo - Vocals
Tim Driscoll - Lead Guitars
Steve Colca - Rhythm Guitars
Joseph Maniscalco - Bass, Synthetizers
Adrian Voorhees - Drums

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