I’m old enough to remember the early embers of heavy metal’s expansion into nastiness and, well, heaviness, as I, as a child, dined lustily at thrash metal’s table. At the same time, hearing the early strains of what turned into black metal via Venom and Celtic Frost was something I didn’t super appreciate at the time but totally do now.
So, when modern bands come along that feel like they’ve had that same journey, my juices start to flow. It’s been that way with Occult Burial, the vicious black thrash band from Ottawa … Ontario, Canada, who have returned with their delirious second record “Burning Eerie Lore.” Not to strip away the devotion to satanic chaos, but this record is fun as fuck. Like, from moment one, things get set on fire in such an exciting way, and it never relents over its nine tracks and almost 40 minutes of material. The band—vocalist/bassist Joël Thomas, guitarist Dan McCloud, drummer Dan Lee—just nail that sweet spot between black metal and thrash and do it in a way that’ll light your hair on fire. Also, there is no excuse for not trying on this record because multiple labels are handling this with just about any format you desire, so get on this shit.
“Intro/Warning to Lust” fires up and blazes as the drums and bass thump, guitars cut through, and everything hisses toward the title track that smashes you right away. The leads go off, and Thomas’ shrieks crush souls as speedy hell is easily achieved. The chorus is simple but deadly while the shrieks aim to peel paint from the walls, and the track stampedes home. “Bastard Curse” has guitars mangling as great riffs powder bones, and a chorus that doesn’t overthink things and just wails hits hard. The playing stomps as the vocals fire away, leading to the soloing overflowing with evil intent, ripping through as the band thrashes. “Skeletal Laughter (Ode to Graves)” brings a channeled beginning before the drums detonate as the riffs just explode. The chorus is great and catchy while the soloing has a filthy rock n roll vibe before things come to a mashing end. “Pyramide de Têtes Coupées” just unloads as horrifying shrieks bloody noses, and the band turns the playing into a rampage. Punchy and vile, the vocals tear back in as the riffs charge, ending everything in a cloud of dust.
“Highway Through Borderland” spits guitars that carve through stone as the verses blast away, and the chorus adds an added jolt of energy. The playing is brutal and fun as doom bells chime, and keys enter and mesmerize before the pace changes on a dime, and we round back toward demolition, with savage cries and plastering destruction slamming the door shut. “Bleeding Spectre (Queen of Doom)” starts as a guitar blast as things blaze out of control, and the riffs tease even more tension is ahead. A tornado of madness rips through while the band tries to bash skulls, and wild cackles work into the massive fires. “Les Griffes du Désespoir” has confounding riffs before the pace jolts, and the vocals smash through with blades exposed. The playing is rowdy and clobbering as the soloing melts into the scene, while the tempo splatters, and the track is hammered shut. “Temple of Mutants (Black Adoration Pt. II)” closes the album with the bass chugging and the playing adding heat, while the vocals scrape flesh. The brewing storm then arrives in full as killer guitar work flexes its muscles, the punishing chorus strikes again, and the track ends thrashed to death.
Occult Burial’s raw, maniacal black thrash is on an utter rampage on “Burning Eerie Lore,” a record so massive it took 19 different labels and format to get this to everyone who needs to hear it. This record is an utter blast to tackles as it lets the fires of rebellion burn brightly, but they always remember to keep things sharp and deadly. This is a damn powerful band and record, and their homage to metal’s past and the evil woven into its fabric earns them much-deserved respect.
For more on the band, go here: https://occultburial.bandcamp.com/
To buy the album, go here: https://invictusproductions666.bandcamp.com/album/burning-eerie-lore
For more on the label, go here: https://invictusproductions.net/
And here: https://www.electricassaultrecords.com/
And here: https://www.stygianblackhand.com/
And here: https://templeofmystery.ca/