Extispex / Maeglin – Built in Sanguine Eclipse [US, Dungeon Synth / Raw Black] (2023)

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Witchcult Records | 2-1-23

I have a suspicion that most of the releases from Witchcult Records are from the same circle of artists and / or have album covers all done by one artist. There is a symmetry in each of the J-Card designs that dates back to 2019 and it is glorious. Built in Sanguine Eclipse is different though as one of the artists has a Metal Archives link and with releases on the DS based Ithildin Tape Productions. Built in Sanguine Eclipse is a split between the Extispex and Maeglin, two acts who mix synth and black metal. Both entities are wonderful and exist as a balance to each other. Where on the one side you have a somber ridden 132 minute soliloquy which breaks into black metal and on the other a black metal composition garnished with symphonic synth. Built in Sanguine Eclipse serves as an introduction to two acts who could have remained in the shadows but for this moment have decided to come out and haunt the dreams of its listeners.

The Visceral Madness Condition – Amb​à​scia [Italy, Sludge Doom] (2023)

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Self Released | 1-24-23

It is my intention to start branching out from raw black and death reviews but we will see how this goes. I enjoy sludge despite the genre being saturated by tropes regarding sound and subject matter. I also say the same thing about other genres but I usually can listen to similar raw death for days. The Visceral Madness Condition is an Italian group who is continually complex the more one looks into their music. From odd looking band photos to the fact their song titles share the name with popular acid house songs from 10 years ago, The Visceral Madness Condition seems like it should be understood with a quick glance but weird things keep ones interest. Amb​à​scia is the band’s third release and continues their love for bands like Eyehategod, Sleep, and Acid Bath but this time around has them singing in Italian. If there is something I love it is native language used in popular forms of music. This combined with an odd woodblock print for the cover which looks like a black metal demo, Amb​à​scia holds enough interest to be fucking weird around you and gets one to think about it long after the record stops playing. The Visceral Madness Condition is the strange group your friends invite to the party but never leave and most likely drink all of your beer and ask for more.